Light Spicy Meatballs

We just can’t get enough of this classic Italian meatball recipe. Top with a generous sprinkle of Parmesan cheese and watch clean plates appear all round.

500g lean minced beef
4 Chinese 5 Spice Smoked Garlic cloves, crushed
100g fresh white breadcrumbs
4tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
40g freshly grated Parmesan
1tsp dried chilli flakes
½tsp paprika
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 egg
1 x 720ml bottle of sieved tomatoes (passata)
10 basil leaves
3tbsp olive oil
300g cooked brown rice, to serve

Put the minced beef, Chinese 5 Spice Smoked Garlic, breadcrumbs, parsley, Parmesan, chilli flakes and paprika in a large bowl. Season with salt and break in the egg. Mix all the ingredients thoroughly with your hands, then shape into 12 equal sized balls. Place on a plate, cover with clingfilm and leave to rest in the fridge for 20 mins.
Meanwhile, tip the passata into a large saucepan and place over a medium heat. Season with salt and pepper, add in the basil leaves, bring to the boil then remove from the heat.
Heat the olive oil in a large non-stick frying pan and gently fry the meatballs over a medium heat for 5 mins until golden brown all over.
Once ready, place the meatballs in the tomato sauce and return the pan to a low heat. Cook for 1 hr with the lid half on, stirring occasionally. If the sauce becomes too thick, add a little water.
To serve, divide the rice between six serving plates, place 2 meat balls on each serving and spoon over the tomato sauce.
Serve hot or at room temperature.


Based on a recipe by Gino D’Acampo and Juliette Kellow


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