Sunday Gravy With Sausages and Meatballs

READY IN: 2hrs 30mins




  • Make the meatballs: In a large mixing bowl, combine beef, bread, and milk.
  • Add the cheese, basil, parsley, egg, and salt.
  • Mix gently but thoroughly.
  • Form into small meatballs, no more than 1 1/2 inches in diameter; set aside (can cover and refrigerate while you are making the sauce).
  • Heat olive oil in a heavy-bottomed stockpot.
  • Add pork chops and sausages and brown on all sides.
  • Transfer pork chops to a plate to make room for the onions.
  • Toss the onions into the pot with the garlic, fennel seeds, and salt.
  • Saute over medium heat stirring frequently and scraping up any bits left behind by the pork and sausages, until the onions are soft and golden.
  • Put the pork chops back in the pot with any juices on the plate.
  • Add the tomatoes, 4 1/2 cups water, and tomato paste.
  • Drop in a few cheese rinds or ends if you have any.
  • Cover the pot, bring to a boil; decrease the heat, and simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Gently drop in the meatballs, 1 at a time, shaking the pot a bit to encourage them to nestle in with the pork and sausage and to make room for the addition of more meatballs.
  • After all the meatballs have been added, continue to simmer, covered, for 1 hour longer, or until the pork chops are very tender.
  • To finish the gravy, transfer the pork chops to a cutting board.
  • Remove and discard the bones, chop up the meat, and return it to the sauce.
  • Keep warm over low heat while you cook the pasta.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  • Generously salt the water and drop in the spaghetti.
  • Cook, stirring often, until al dente; drain pasta.
  • To serve--start with a large, heated deep platter or pasta bowl.
  • Cover the bottom with a ladleful of gravy and a good sprinkling of Pecorino Romano.
  • Top with half the pasta.
  • Add more gravy and cheese, the remaining pasta, and another layer of gravy and cheese.
  • Serve immediately with more grated cheese.
  • Pass the meatballs, sausage, pork, and additional gravy in a bowl at the table.