An excellent dish from Atlanta’s Craig Richards!
PORK AND BEEF MEATBALLS
1 and 1/4 cup assorted mushrooms (stemmed, such as cremini, black trumpet, shiitakes)
3 tablespoons canola oil (divided)
3 cloves garlic (peeled, minced)
1/4 yellow onion (peeled, finely diced)
1/2 tablespoon fresh oregano (destemmed, finely chopped)
1/2 tablespoon fresh thyme (leaves removed, finely chopped)
1 and 1/2 tablespoons parsley (leaves removed, finely chopped, divided)
1/2 pound ground pork
1/2 pound ground beef
1/2 tablespoon tomato paste
2 large eggs
1 and 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs (divided)
2 jars tomato sauce or marinara (for serving)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper (to taste)
Preheat the oven to 450ºF.
In the carafe of a food processor add the mushrooms and pulse until finely chopped.
Heat a large saute pan over medium heat with canola oil. Add garlic, onions and mushrooms and cook until fragrant and mushrooms are tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in the oregano, thyme and 1/2 tablespoon of parsley into the onion mixture. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
In a medium-sized bowl add the mushroom mixture, ground pork, and ground beef and mix thoroughly until just combined. Add tomato paste and mix thoroughly to combine. Add eggs, 1 cup of bread crumbs, season with salt and pepper and mix to combine.
Using a 2-ounce ice cream scoop, form the meat into 1 1/2-inch balls. Place the meatballs on a baking sheet and roast until caramelized on top, about 8-10 minutes. Remove from the oven once cooked through.
In a large saute pan, add the tomato sauce and heat over medium heat. Add the meatballs to the sauce, bring to a simmer and cook for another 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat a small saute pan over medium-high heat and warm remaining tablespoon of canola oil. Add remaining 1/2 cup of bread crumbs and remaining tablespoon of chopped parsley. Toss continuously until bread crumbs are golden brown and toasted, about 3-4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Divide the meatballs and sauce evenly amongst shallow bowls and top with toasted bread crumb mixture.
Tip: Make a large batch of meatballs and freeze for up to 1 month in a zip-top bag for an easy weeknight meal!