Stroll Down Memory Lane - My Mom's Meatballs with Mashed Potatoes
I remembered a dish my mom used to make when my brothers and sisters and I were little. I had not thought about this dish in such a long time. I don't remember having it since then either. It is really such a simple recipe yet I fondly remember enjoying it so much. But I wouldn't call it one of my favorite things my mom made. I just liked it. The dish is meatballs with a marinara sauce served over mashed potatoes. My mom would not call it mashed potatoes though. She called it "pure de papa" or potato puree. What made my mom's potatoes special was that they weren't thick. They were more on the runny side.
What made me remember this recipe was the fact that I found red veal at the local farmer's market. The veal comes from the Big Island. I was pretty intrigued by the fact it was red veal. I bought two pounds of the red veal. I really did not want to make meatloaf as the owner suggested. That is when I remembered my mom's delicious meatball dish. More on the veal on a later post.
1 lb. beef, turkey or red veal
1 slice whole grain bread soaked in milk
1 onion, finely minced
Salt and pepper to taste
Mix all the ingredients together. Form into medium sized balls (not too small nor too big either).
Heat up a cast iron skillet. Add approximately 1/4 cup of olive oil. Brown the meatballs until they are cooked thoroughly. Set aside.
1 large can of good quality tomato sauce. You can use whole plum tomatoes if you prefer.
Fresh basil and oregano
1 onion, chopped
3 large garlic cloves, minced.
Heat a saucepan. Add extra virgin olive oil to coat bottom of saucepan. Add the garlic and brown lightly. Add the onions and saute until translucent. Add the tomato sauce, basil and oregano. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and lower heat to medium low. Simmer one hour.
6 large potatoes
Low fat milk
Salt and pepper to taste
Boil the potatoes until the fork goes through easily. Peel and place in a large bowl. Gradually add the milk until the potatoes are the consistency you want. If you want a thinner consistency, just add more milk. Salt and pepper to taste. If you would like to add butter, do so before adding the milk. Mashed well. Note: If you are wondering my my hands look so masculine it's because those hands belong to my husband. He mashed the potatoes for me :-)
A nice tossed salad goes well with this dish. I made a simple salad with romaine lettuce, grape tomatoes and Japanese cucumbers all bought at the farmer's market. What is not shown in the photo is the arugula and purslane friends gave me yesterday when I visited their community garden plot. My mom has purslane growing in her yard but it is a weed!