Ooey Gooey Pesto Meatballs in Tomato Sauce

Merry belated Christmas to all of you in majestic Blogreaderland! I hope your holiday season is going well--and if you're in the northeast, that you're safely tucked away in your home or hotel with a bottle of wine, dodging 15" of snow and 55mph winds. 'Cause that is not fun and I am not jealous of you, and that is coming from a midwesterner.

We've been having a delightful holiday and I've been cooking up a storm for my family. Greg and I stayed a night longer than expected, so tonight I created a combination of two totally awesome sounding meatball & marinara recipes. One was from Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice, the other was from Cozy, Delicious. These two recipes have been haunting me with their gorgeous photos and fabulous sounding ingredients. So, I thought I would kill two birds with one stone and just make one, ultimate meatball: Turkey-Pesto Mozzarella-Stuffed Meatballs. Or, to be less wordy, "Ooey Gooey Meatballs." In yummy sauce.

Ooey Gooey Pesto Meatballs in Tomato Sauce (a frankenstein-ish combo of this recipe and this recipe, from two fabulous blogs, as cited above)
For the meatballs:
-1 pound ground turkey
-1 cup fine breadcrumbs
-1 egg and 1 egg white
-1/3 cup pesto
-1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
-1/2 teaspoon dried basil
-1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
-1/4 teaspoon salt
-1/4 teaspoon pepper
-About 8-10 ounces fresh mozzarella, cut into 1/2" pieces

For the sauce:
-2 tablespoons olive oil
-1 medium or large onion, diced
-3 large cloves garlic, minced
-1 green pepper, diced
-28 ounce can whole tomatoes, undrained
-1/4 cup red wine
-3 ounces tomato paste
-3/4 cup water
-1 teaspoon dried oregano
-1 teaspoon dried basil
-1 teaspoon dried parsley
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-1/2 teaspoon pepper

1) Mix all ingredients (except mozzarella) for meatballs together in a large bowl with fork. Place a chunk of meat in your hand and flatten with your other palm. Put a piece of mozzarella in the center and gently form the meat around the cheese. Roll into an evenly sized ball. Place each finished meatball on a baking sheet. Preheat oven to 425. Once all meatballs are rolled, bake for 10 minutes. Set aside.

2) Saute onion, garlic, and green pepper in a preheated pan with olive oil. Add tomato paste and saute for 2 minutes. Add all spices, the can of tomatoes, water, and wine, mixing well. Break up the tomatoes into pieces with your spoon/spatula. Carefully add all the meatballs. Bring to a simmer and let cook for 35-45 minutes.

Serve over spaghetti or bucatini....then enjoy thoroughly!

For fun, I also recreated my Chocolate Filled Croissants:

And my Murgh Makhani, this time with chicken over red quinoa:

As you can see, my mom did a lovely job setting the table.

And a merrily gustatory holiday was had by all.


Belinda @zomppa said...

Nice surprise there!! Great recipe! Sounds like you had a great one.

cynnerth said...

Everything was fabulous, Heather! Thanks so much for making all of that for us. Having you an extra day was an extra wonderful pleasure.

(I need to buy myself some purple-ish napkins for next time.)

mhaithaca said...

After having that stuffed meatball a couple of weeks ago, I'm rarin' to try your recipe! Also intrigued by the Makhani... *click*

Swathi said...

Awesome recipes. Looks all delicious.

Roxan said...

Ooey gooey?! That sounds so delicious! Right when I saw the title I knew there would be a bunch of cheese in there (my favorite). I've never made pasta with fresh mozarella like this before, I'll definitely have to do that next time.

Rich said...

Oh my. I read the title and was like 'hey, that's a pretty good idea', and then saw the photo with the cheese and said 'wow. That's brilliant!' So I stuck with that. That's brilliant!

Trix said...

Mmm, this is a rib sticking meal for this cold and windy Northeast weather!!! Though I'm in Maryland, and we dodged all the snowfall. Thank goodness.

The Crepes of Wrath said...

You had me at "ooey gooey"!

5 Star Foodie said...

I love the idea of pesto in the meatballs, they sound so good! Happy New Year!

Lasagna Guy said...

Yum Yum I must have some!! What a great recipe, thanks

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