Juicy little meatballs in tomato sauce


  • ¾ cup (45g) fresh sourdough or wholemeal breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 600g lean beef mince
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon thyme leaves (tiny and yum!)
  • sea salt and cracked black pepper, to taste
  • tomato sauce
  • 3 cups (750ml) tomato puree (passata)
  • 1 cup (250ml) beef stock
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 sprigs basil (just for cooking)


1. Place the breadcrumbs and milk in a big bowl and mix, using a wooden spoon, to combine. Allow to stand for 1 minute.

2. Add the beef, garlic, mustard, thyme, salt and pepper. Mix it all really well, so everything is fully combined.

3. Line a tray with non-stick baking paper. Using clean hands that are wet with a little bit of water (to combat stickiness), roll 2 tablespoons of the beef mixture into a ball. Place on the tray, then repeat until you’ve used all the mixture.

4. To make the tomato sauce, place a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add the puree, stock, garlic and basil and bring to a simmer (you’ll see gentle bubbles begin to appear).

5. Slide the meatballs into the sauce (watching for splashes). Simmer for 10 minutes or until cooked through, rolling them around with a wooden spoon every few minutes so they cook evenly. Discard the basil sprigs (and thank them for their service) and serve the meatballs and sauce on top of hot spaghetti or veggies.

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