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Papa Nick's Meatballs, Sauce and More

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Serves 15 | Prep Time 60 | Cook Time 240-360

Why I Love This Recipe


Ingredients You'll Need

Sauce Base
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 -1/2 pounds pork neck bones
2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
1 1/2 cups water
2 (28 ounce) cans tomato puree
1 tablespoon white sugar 1 teaspoon black pepper
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon basil
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon parsley

1 Cup Italian bread crumbs - seasoned
3/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese (true Miceli's use 1 cup)
1 cup water
3 eggs, beaten
1 pound ground pork
1 pound ground veal
1 pound ground beef
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
Salt and pepper to taste (approx. 1 teaspoon of each)

Italian Sausage Links
Pork Neck Bones


Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat in the bottom of a large saucepan, and fry the garlic 5 to 8 minutes, until brown and fragrant. Remove the garlic cloves and set aside. Place the pork neck bones in the saucepan and fry, turning occasionally, until the meat and bones have browned, about 15 minutes.

Return the garlic cloves to the saucepan, and stir in the tomato paste and 1 1/2 cups of water. Bring to a boil, and pour in the tomato puree. Reduce heat to low, and simmer for about 3 hours, stirring from the bottom often to prevent burning, until the pork neck bones are tender and the mixture begins to thicken. Stir in the sugar, pepper, and baking soda, basil, oregano and parsley. Continue to simmer while you prepare the meatballs.

Combine all meatballs ingredients. Mix thoroughly and form into 24 meatballs about 2 1/2 inches in diameter. ( Or smaller if you'd like)

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat, stir in the minced garlic and chopped fresh basil, let them cook for about 1 minute, and then add the meatballs. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and fry them on all sides until brown, about 15 minutes, working in batches, if necessary.

Place the browned meatballs, along with the oil, garlic, and basil from the skillet into the sauce, stirring lightly to avoid breaking them. Simmer for about 1 1/2 more hours, until the meatballs are cooked, the sauce is thick, and all the flavors have blended.

Additional Notes:

*****You can either simmer this sauce in a very large pot on top of the stove following the recipe and times above....or cook in a crock pot - if you do the crock pot allow the sauce to cook for 3-4 hours before putting meatballs in. After adding meatballs, cook another 3-4 hours.

****Now, if you are a true Miceli - start the sauce VERY early in the morning. Then immediately make the meatballs but DOUBLE THE batch. One batch gets cooked as directed and placed in refrigerator to wait until time to add to the sauce. The second batch, fry them until thoroughly cooked. Place on paper towel to absorb grease. For breakfast, enjoy your meatballs on a fresh, hot bagel :)

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