Prep 15 mins
Cook 2 hrs
Badda-bing badda-boom. Its a thing of beauty. This recipe is not a fast one, its an all afternoon dinner; But it is definitely worth it. From The Soprano Family Cookbook
For the Sauce
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 lb meaty pork neck bones or 1 lb pork spareribs
- 1 lb veal stew meat or 2 veal shoulder chops
- 1 lb Italian sausage
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1⁄4 cup tomato paste
- 3 (28 ounce) canspeeled Italian tomatoes
- 2 cups water
- 6 leaves fresh basil, torn into small pieces
For the Meatballs
- 1 lb ground beef (or combination of beef or pork)
- 1⁄2 cup plain breadcrumbs
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon finely minced garlic
- 1⁄2 cup freshly grated romano cheese or 1⁄2 cup parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 lb pasta shells or 1 lb rigatoni pasta, cooked and hot
- freshly grated romano cheese or parmesan cheese
- To make the sauce, heat the oil in a large heavy pot over medium heat.
- Pat the pork dry and put the pieces in the pot.
- Cook turning occasionally, for about 15 minutes or until nicely browned on all sides.
- Transfer pork to a plate.
- Brown the veal in the same way and add it to the plate.
- Place the sausages in the pot and brown on all sides.
- Set the sausages aside with the pork.
- Drain off most of the fat from the pot.
- Add the garlic and cook for about 2 minutes or until golden.
- Remove and discard the garlic.
- Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute.
- With a food mill (I use a Braun hand blender) puree the tomatoes, with their juice into the pot.
- Or for a chunkier sauce, just chop up the tomatoes and add them.
- Add the water; and salt and pepper to taste.
- Add the pork, veal, sausages, and basil and bring the sauce to a simmer.
- Partially cover the pot and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 2 hours.
- If the sauce becomes too thick, add a little more water.
- Meanwhile, make the meatballs: Combine all the ingredients except the oil in a large bowl.
- Mix together thoroughly.
- Rinse your hands with cool water and lightly shape the mixture into 2 inch balls.
- Heat the oil in a large heavy skillet.
- Add the meatballs and brown them well on all sides.
- They will finish cooking in the sauce.
- Transfer the meatballs to a plate.
- After the sauce has cooked for its two hours, add the meatballs and cook for 30 minutes or until the sauce is thick and the meats are very tender.
- To serve, remove the meats from the sauce and set aside.
- Toss the cooked pasta with the sauce.
- Sprinkle with cheese.
- Serve the meats as a second course, or reserve them for another day.
what a meal! this was fabulous, especially the next day when all the flavors blended. i used veal chops, country style boneless spare ribs, both hot and sweet sausages. i added extra basil, oregano, parsley, and had to switch pots, my 8 quart was overflowing. i tansfered this to a 12 q pot, added the meatballs, and it simmered just fine. this is a keeper!
Excellent! Meat was delicious but I would liked to have added at least 4 cans of tomatoes so as to have more sauce but my pot was not large enough. Thanks for posting!
This is VERY close to the gravy my mother has always made, people always ask for my mother's recipe but there is none, she learned from watching her mother and I learned from watching her. NOW I have this recipe to pass onto people. Made this for dinner tonight and no one realized it wasn't my usual gravy.