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WONDERFUL. I have never made spaghetti before and was looking for a tasty recipe. This was was perfect. My husband and I loved it. I made the recipe as it is listed but couldn't get a hold of the fennel head. The only thing I added was red crushed peppers to add a zing to the sauce. Will make this again because it was tasty and overall easy to make. Thanks for posting.

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Dancer Who Loves To Cook December 18, 2009

This is a great recipe, I do not use the fennel just because I don't have it in my pantry, sometimes I use the red wine and sometimes I don't (depending if there is any in the house) tastes great either way I also add slices black olives.

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Monica P October 31, 2011

I can't believe I haven't rated this recipe - it's delicious! I just made it for the third time today - love it. We thought the sauce was perfect and the meatballs divine (I had never baked them before and what a great idea - they actually stay round) Thanks for sharing!

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Barb_in_Indy February 14, 2011

Red sauce with fennel in it was a new one for us. I thought I'd love it, as I love anise and licorice and have been known to eat plain fennel seeds. And even though I didn't add the sugar, as we prefer a more acid tomato flavor, the sauce was too sweet. We also felt the need to add a large amount of black pepper, over a teaspoon, a serious amount of salt, 2 teaspoons, and a good teaspoon of red pepper flake. On it's own, I'd give the sauce 2 stars.

The meatballs are worth 4 stars. I baked them in mini muffin tins which do a great job of collecting the drippings. I made the sauce yesterday and simmered the meatballs for about an hour, then tucked the whole thing into the refrigerator over night. Today, DH told me he'd had a midnight snack of a few of the meatballs. That's high praise from my self-identified, food snob spouse.

We had this for dinner tonight. I'm keeping the rest of the meatballs but not the remaining sauce. While I doubt I'll use the meatball portion of the recipe again, it's similar enough to my usual recipe, I will add some fennel seeds into the mix.

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OliveLover October 12, 2010

I made this tonight and it was wonderful. I couldn't find fennel heads, so I omitted them and I also couldn't find italian tomato sauce so I used italian crushed tomatoes. I let my sauce simmer for about 1 1/2 hours and it came out wonderful my whole house smelled so good. Thanks for a wonderful dinner. I had enough sauce to freeze for another meal. Thanks, KadesMom!

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children from A to Z August 09, 2007

Wow, the fennel is what really makes the sauce!! No star rating yet for me, bc I was only able to simmer the sauce for about 20 minutes with the meatballs. I can only imagine the flavor if it had time to simmer down more.

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Jules127 July 31, 2007

Awesome! easy to make, and tastes great.

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taprobane April 06, 2007

A KEEPER! The best I've tasted and I'm a chef. My family loved this! The fennel is the secret ingredient that makes the dish sensational. If you can find fresh fennel, use it; but if not, use fennel seeds. Awesome!

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pchristie1 March 25, 2007
Spaghetti and Meatballs