The Garlic Issue

Spaghetti Meatballs & Sausage

Yield 8 servings
2 ratings



2/3 cup crumbled day-old Rouses French Bread

6 tablespoons whole milk, room temperature

2 eggs

1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

1 pound ground pork

1 pound lean ground beef

1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped

2 green onions, finely chopped

1 small bunch parsley, finely chopped

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1/2 cup olive oil, divided


2 tablespoons olive oil, divided

10 ounces pancetta, diced

1 pound Rouses Italian Sausage

4 tablespoons Rouses Sicilian Olive Oil

1 yellow onion, coarsely chopped

1 carrot, peeled and coarsely chopped

4 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped

1 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper flakes

1 6-ounce can tomato paste

2 28-ounce cans whole San Marzano tomatoes, certified D.O.P., hand crushed

Pinch Rouses Italian Seasoning

Pinch sugar

1 cup red wine, like Chianti

2 pounds Rouses Authentic Italian Spaghetti

1 cup grated Romano cheese


In a medium bowl combine the bread, milk, egg, and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Stir well to combine and allow the bread to absorb the liquid. Add the ground pork and beef and salt. Fold in onions, parsley, salt and pepper, add 1/4 cup olive oil, and use your hands to gently combine. Roll heaping tablespoons of the meat mixture into balls. (If you don’t have a measuring spoon, these should be about the size of golf balls.) Lay the meatballs neatly on nonstick sheet pans and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight to chill.

Heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add 1/4 cup olive oil, or enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan. Add as many meatballs as the pan will allow without overcrowding, working in batches if needed. Brown the meatballs on all sides, rotating as needed, about 5 to 6 minutes. Remove to a plate when they are browned on all sides. Continue until all the meatballs are browned.


Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the pancetta and brown, then remove. Brown the sausage, then remove.

Add the remaining olive oil and saute until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Add the onion, carrot and garlic and saute until tender, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and red pepper flakes. Saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Stir in the tomato paste and cook until tomatoes turn orange. Add crushed tomatoes, Italian seasoning, sugar and red wine. Stir to combine. Simmer uncovered over medium-low heat until the sauce thickens slightly and the flavors blend, about 15 minutes.

Add the meatballs to the sauce and cover the pan. Allow to simmer for at least 1 hour, stirring occasionally to make sure the sauce doesn’t burn. Remove from the heat.

Meanwhile, boil the spaghetti in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the pasta water. Toss the spaghetti with the meatballs, sausage and sauce in the skillet, adding some of the reserved pasta water until the pasta is moist. Season with salt to taste. Toss with the grated cheese.