Recipe of the Week


Prep Time: 1 Hour
Yields: 4 Servings

The Sicilian families leaving their island for Louisiana in the 1960s brought with them many culinary treasures. I first learned to make meatballs from a wonderful Sicilian woman in Donaldsonville, Louisiana and I am happy to share the recipe with you. In this gluten-free version, I am using an Italian bread crumb especially made for this dish.

Ingredients for Meatballs:
½ pound ground beef
½ pound ground pork
¼ cup minced red onion
¼ cup minced celery
¼ cup minced bell pepper
¼ cup minced garlic
1 egg, lightly beaten
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
¼ cup minced parsley
¼ cup minced basil
1 tsp chopped oregano
salt and black pepper to taste
granulated garlic to taste
¾ cup gluten-free Italian bread crumbs

Method for Meatballs:
In a large bowl, combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly to incorporate well. NOTE: I recommend frying a small portion of meat for taste and adjust seasonings if necessary. Roll into 16 mini meatballs. Cover and set aside.

Ingredients for Soup:
2 cups cooked gluten-free, tiny shell or orzo pasta
2 (28-ounce) cans gluten-free tomato purée or marinara sauce
1 (8-ounce) can gluten-free tomato sauce
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
½ cup minced onions
½ cup minced celery
¼ cup minced green bell pepper
¼ cup minced yellow bell pepper
¼ cup thinly sliced garlic
3 cups gluten-free beef stock
2 bay leaves
¼ cup chopped basil
1 tsp chopped thyme
1 tsp chopped oregano
salt and black pepper to taste
granulated garlic to taste
¼ cup chopped parsley
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Method for Soup:
In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onions, celery, bell peppers and sliced garlic then sauté 3–5 minutes or until vegetables are wilted. Add tomato purée, tomato sauce, beef stock, bay leaves, basil, thyme and oregano. Bring to a rolling boil, reduce to simmer and cook 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add prepared meatballs, one at a time, into the hot sauce, taking care not to stir for the first 10 minutes after the meatballs are added. After 10 minutes, stir gently to distribute meatballs evenly. Season to taste with salt, pepper and granulated garlic. Allow to simmer 10–15 additional minutes prior to serving. Additional stock may be needed to maintain a soup-like consistency. To serve, ladle an equal portion of soup into each of 4 soup bowls and garnish with parsley and Parmesan cheese.


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