Turkey and spinach meatballs in tomato sauce

These were a mostly just a way to use up a lot of stuff we had hanging around in the fridge (spinach a day or so from dissolving into a mush, one random stale english muffin, a block of weird cheese from a Hickory Farms basket my mother sent us home with after Christmas), but they turned out to be delicious. I think there just isn’t a way to go wrong with seasoned meat cooked in tomato sauce.

1 lb. ground turkey
8 oz. baby spinach, lightly steamed and chopped, divided about in half
1 tbsp. Penzey’s Italian seasoning
6 oz. mild cheddar with vegetable bits, grated (any mild cheese would be fine)
one english muffin, blitzed into crumbs in the food processor (maybe 1/2 cup?)
salt and pepper

Mix the turkey, about half of the spinach, the cheese, and seasonings together, using a spatula or your hands. Add the crumbs gradually until the mixture holds together. Form into 1″ balls and brown in a bit of oil in whatever pan you’re going to use for the sauce. Work in batches to avoid crowding the pan and set aside.

Tomato sauce
2 small or 1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 large cans whole tomatoes in juice
2 tbsp. Penzey’s Italian seasoning
salt and pepper
Sweat the onion and garlic in olive oil. If the meatballs left a lot of browned bits in the bottom of the pan, you may want to add a bit of wine or water to help scrape that up first. Don’t discard it though; it’ll add a lot of flavor. Just push it to the side of the pan while the onions cook. Add the tomatoes, squishing them through your fingers to help break them up, and the seasoning. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, then turn it to medium-low and add the browned meatballs to the pot. Let the sauce simmer, stirring occasionally, until it’s thickened a bit and the meatballs are cooked. Add the remaining spinach to the pot and allow it to heat through. Eat over pasta or polenta.

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