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Barefoot! Real Meatballs & Spaghetti

February 12, 2009

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A big thanks is in order for Rebecca of Ezra Pound Cake who chose this week’s Barefoot recipe.  What is the thanks for?  The excuse to try out another recipe for spaghetti and meatballs?  Sure.  The crazy antics that she’s always coming up with that make me laugh so hard I have stitches?  Absolutely.  The extra kiss I received from The Husband Tuesday night when we sat down to eat?  Okay.  

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Really, I want to thank Rebecca for choosing a recipe that has wine in it.  It was the perfect excuse to pour a glass while slowly relaxing in the kitchen as I made dinner.  Somehow between the first sip and the fourth sip all of my worries slipped away.  Don’t get me wrong… the four sips were well spaced out, I hadn’t even finished the glass by the time the mammoth meatballs were in the marinara.  

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Has that ever happened to you?  One minute you’re fine… enjoying a glass of wine (which is not a rare occurrence) and suddenly you’re singing AC/DC’s Big Balls at the top of your lungs?  Don’t lie… you’re laughing at me because you can relate.  At some point in your life the full moon has zapped all tolerance from your body and made you the lightweight of the century.  The half a glass of wine you were enjoying has suddenly turned you into an immature teenager dancing through your house singing the absurd lyrics to a song from your youth that would never grace your lips in a more sober lucid moment.  

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Okay, okay.  You’re all better people than me.  Maybe it’s the stress I’m under lately.  Maybe I haven’t had a drink in a few weeks… who knows.  All I know is this was one excellent recipe.  I think.  I can’t really recall. What I can recall is this: the only changes I made to this recipe were to reduce fat and up the nutrients.

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First of all, The Husband and I don’t do veal… so I just omitted it and ground some extra pork chops with my Kitchenaid meat grinder*.  I also omitted the water in the meatball recipe because I baked my balls instead of frying them in a skillet.  Other than that, I switched all purpose pasta for whole-grain pasta and added about a teaspoon of red pepper flakes to my oil as it heated to prepare the marinara.  The recipe for meatballs is very similar to my own… just on a larger scale and the addition of nutmeg (which I loved).  Find the recipe here.  

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Since we had so many left over mammoth sized meatballs, I made chopped meatball subs for dinner after Martial Arts last night.  Which, of course, were fabulous.

If you aren’t a barefoot blogger yet… shame on you.  Come join us!  We’re full of deliciously good times!

*If you’ve ever toyed with the idea of purchasing the  meat grinder attachment for your Kitchenaid… I strongly suggest you take the plunge.  It is the most amazingly wonderful “gadget” I have!

Mosey on back tomorrow for a last minute Valentine’s Day treat for you and your sweetie.  Whatever you thought about chocolate covered strawberries is about to change forever.

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19 Comments leave one →
  1. February 12, 2009 09:34

    Great idea on sampling the wine while cooking. I should have thought of that! Your pictures are great!

  2. February 12, 2009 09:34

    Cat, your spaghetti and meatballs look wonderful! I absolutely loved reading your post, fun, fun, fun ! And those meatball subs? Now I am going to have to make some “meatballs” again just to make subs, they look amazing. I’m doing a strawberry treat for Valentine’s Day too, but I’m thinking mine must be way more traditional than yours 🙂

  3. February 12, 2009 11:49

    Your spaghetti looks amazing! Great pictures.

  4. insanelygoodfood permalink
    February 12, 2009 13:35

    Cat! I feel better, my meatballs looked like yours so I must have done it right even with the subs and tweaks I made! They were delish weren’t they!! :o) Jill

  5. February 12, 2009 14:21

    Cat – Your photography is great! I’m a new BFB and am enjoying getting to know all of you.

  6. February 12, 2009 14:55

    It all looks great. And there is nothing I like more than singing loudly in between sips of wine (the looks of mortification on the faces of the kids are priceless!)

  7. February 12, 2009 15:47

    Great pictures! I love that you used the meatballs again in the sub…the hubs did that for his lunch, but it didn’t look NEARLY as good as yours.

    I was sipping my chianti while cooking too. As Ina would say, “how bad is that?”.

    I need to get my post up now!

  8. February 12, 2009 16:21

    As I have discovered that my pups love it when I dance, especially when I flail my arms and legs about, I can be found all akimbo in the kitchen. Wine or no wine.
    Great for stress relief and probably a good mini work out for an old chick like me. (although I am more likely to sing Bing Crosby or Burt Bacharach)
    I love the healthy changes that you have made to your p’sketti – now you can eat more!
    So nice that hubby loved it so – always feels good to knock one out of the park! 🙂

  9. February 12, 2009 18:25

    I thought about doing the meatball sub too… only we porked down the meatballs too fast. This was a good recipe for fridged FEB.

    Ps. I loved the uncooked meatball photo!

  10. whatsonmyplate permalink
    February 12, 2009 20:10

    LOVED this post! I also love your use of leftover meatballs. Most excellent.

    Tonya @ What’s On My Plate

  11. February 12, 2009 20:16

    they look amazing! I loved the post, I was laughing out loud. are you sure it wasn’t 4 glasses instead of 4 sips?

  12. February 12, 2009 21:05

    Looks great! Wish I had thought to keep the leftovers for meatball subs…

  13. insanelygoodfood permalink
    February 13, 2009 02:48

    Cat,
    Also, your pictures are fantastic. What camera do you use? How do you get them so ‘cookbook’ looking?
    :o) Jill

  14. February 13, 2009 09:43

    That happens to me more than I’d like to admit!

  15. February 13, 2009 12:13

    I’m with Suzie, my favorite time to cook is when I can have some wine and sing real loud! I do have to be careful what songs, though, with the kids around.

    I liked this recipe a lot, and will definitely borrow your idea and make some into subs.

  16. February 13, 2009 14:38

    I’m always happy to drink wine while I cook, whether or not in the recipe! 😉

    Ok, your meatballs look fantastic! And that sub…so hungry right now.

  17. February 13, 2009 23:54

    As soon as I plated my Barefoot Bloggers Real Meatballs and Spaghetti and tasted those meatballs, all I could think about was a meatball sub for lunch the next day. They were great!

  18. March 5, 2009 14:31

    Oh my God, I think I’ve died and gone to heaven at the blog.

    I am a huge Barefoot Contessa fan. If you have her newest cookbook “Back to Basics”, I recommend trying her Mustard-roasted fish.
    Think creme fraiche, dijon mustard, stoneground mustard, minced shallot and capers on firm, mild fish. I use orange roughy but she recommends red snapper.
    I’m not a fan of strong tasting fish and this has just been the perfect fish recipe for me and mine.
    I would have posted a link but the recipe is not available at her Food Network page.

    Great pictures and commentary. I too love what you do wiht leftover meatballs.

  19. March 6, 2009 18:09

    I don’t even like spagetti and your picture of the spag and meatballs has me tracking down the recipe. Now I know what I’ll be cooking for my next dinner party. Thanks!

    Also, I am not a huge fryer and a newer cook, so thanks too for the comment about leaving out the water because you baked them. Good luck with your culinary aspirations! Can’t wait for more recipe ideas : )

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