These meatballs are really quick and easy to make, so they’re perfect for a meal during the week. They also contain lots of hidden veg, so they are great for increasing your daily quota, or to help when it comes to feeding fussy children.
You can also freeze them, and the sauce (either together or separately) so they’re always ready to use. Just defrost in the fridge overnight, and be sure to heat them thoroughly before eating.
Prepare: 20 minutes
Cook: 45-55 minutes
1 onion, peeled
1 stick celery
1 carrot, peeled
1 clove garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp dried thyme (optional)
2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
1 tsp sugar
500g turkey thigh mince
2 tbsp breadcrumbs
2 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan (or extra mature Cheddar)
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- Put the onion, celery, carrot and garlic into a food processor and blitz until very finely chopped (or you can do this by hand). Reserve 2 tablespoons of the mixture for the meatballs.
- Warm the oil in a large, heavy-based frying pan or shallow casserole, add the vegetable mixture, along with the thyme (if using), and cook over a low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes.
- Add the tomatoes, filling up each empty can with water and adding that to the pan too. Season with the sugar, 1 tsp sea salt flakes and some pepper. Stir well and let the mixture come to the boil, then turn the heat down and simmer gently while you make the meatballs.
- Put the reserved chopped vegetables into a large bowl with the mince, breadcrumbs, cheese and Worcestershire sauce. Season with 1/2 tsp sea salt flakes and mix together with your hands.
- Dampen your hands with a little cold water and roll teaspoon sized pieces of mince into balls. Put each one onto a large, lined baking tray or board as you go, to make about 50 little meatballs (or fewer bigger ones! It’s up to you!).
- Drop the meatballs gently into the simmering sauce – working from the outside of the pan, inwards, in concentric circles. Simmer gently for 20-30 minutes, turning the balls over halfway through, until thoroughly cooked and there is no pink meat. Serve with pasta, rice, couscous or even a jacket potato or wrap.