Balls, Balls, Balls.

Perverts, this is a Meatballs 3 different ways recipe. A menage a tois of balls. (Ha sorry I can’t help myself). Anyway, baked or pan seared…you pick your favorite. Chicken, turkey, or pork…you pick your favorite meat (that’s what she said?). OK for real though, the base for the mixture of these meatballs is the same: simple and delicious. The rest, you pick. Swear you can do it, all by your damn delish self.

Fine chop a large Vidalia onion, throw that in the bowl and then throw in Italian breadcrumbs (About a cup) After that add red chili flakes based on your level of spice preference. Lastly, toss in parsley flakes (dried or fresh), salt, black pepper (to taste, I do a pinch each or 1 tsp.) and a tablespoon of minced garlic. (I did 2 tbsp. but I’m crazy for garlic, so ya disclaimer) Crack an egg into the mixture and add your choice of ground meat. Don’t over-work the meat and form balls with your hands. I try to wet my hands with olive oil when doing this so the meat slides right off. (Too many jokes, too easy, I’ll take the mature route just this once).

Editor’s Note: Make sure if frying or pan searing that your olive oil is hot enough, but not scorching because the inside will remain raw while the outside burns (medium heat, kids). For baking the oven should be at 350 degrees and the duration will be based on meatball size. (1 lb. of ground meat should yield 6-8 medium-sized meatballs at 15-20 minutes).

Happy Eating, XO.

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Call it what you will

May you call it marinara sauce, red sauce, or gravy (shout out to South Philly Italians). Guaranteed that you will call out Damn that was Delish!

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 chopped yellow onions
  • 3 teaspoons minced garlic (check out the tip for minced garlic on our Instagram, like that shameless plug?) 
  • 1 cup good red wine (I hate when food snobs say “good” like you would use something crappy, but I will say cheaper wine has a different alcohol content/flavor than more expensive or better quality wine so ya, hate to say it but “good” wine it is).
  • 2 (28-ounce) can plum tomatoes in puree, chopped (san marzano tomatoes dude, go real Gambino on this. Cento if you are looking for a brand name, its a yellow can, become friends with it).
  • 2 tablespoon chopped fresh basil (I know Paisanos will say fresh only but for the rest of us non Italians, dried will be fine, just lessen it to 1 tbsp.)
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper & 1tsp of red chili flakes

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and saute over medium heat until clear, that’s about 5 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the wine and cook on high heat, scraping up all the brown bits in the pan, until almost all the liquid evaporates, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, basil, salt, and pepper. Cover, and simmer on the lowest heat for 15 minutes.

You can always add anchovy, black olives, and capers to give it a puttanesca feel. Bottom line, this simple sauce has been the “gravy” for meatballs, the starter for many sauces, the binder for lasagnas, basically it is used for any and all things Italian. This is a staple.
Homemade-Marinara-Sauce-1
Happy Eating, XO.

Fancy Pants Chicken Piccata

I made this recipe one night pretending I was rich, fabulous and eating in a fancy restaurant. I never actually left my kitchen but let me tell you, it tasted like I was eating in a fancy restaurant. I couldn’t believe how simple but flavorful it turned out! BONUS: wine is needed for cooking this dish so pour yourself a glass (or two) while you’re at it.

  • 2 boneless chicken breasts, halved and pounded to 1/4 inch thick
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon butter mixed with 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1/4 cup capers, drained
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley (If you don’t have fresh parsley, don’t stress. I only had dried parsley on hand when making this and it came out just fine.)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 bag of salad
  • The lemon vinaigrette dressing from this post
  • Olive oil

Dip both sides of the chicken breasts in to the flour to lightly coat. Add 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil to a large skillet and set to medium heat. Cook the chicken until golden (about 3 min. each side). When done, keep in a warm dish off to the side.

Don’t worry about cleaning the pot (no one likes a million dishes to clean when you’re done. Let’s be honest.). Instead, add wine, lemon juice, and broth until it boils. Then add in the butter/flour mixture and cook until it thickens. Add in the capers, parsley, and additional butter and feel free to add in salt or pepper. If it gets too thick, you can add more wine (and don’t forget to pour some more for yourself).

Toss the dressing in with the salad, add the chicken, and pour your sauce from the pan over. I attempted to make it look fancy with a few uncooked capers and sprinkled parsley on top. Now light the candles, turn on some background music and I swear you’ll feel like your eating from a fancy restaurant.

Happy eating, XO.

Chicken Piccata