Tender meatballs dressed in savory tomato sauce, smothered in provolone cheese, and tucked into toasted whole wheat focaccia or French bread—oh, so good!
The Ultimate Meatball Sandwich
- 2 cloves garlic , minced
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 8 slices provolone cheese
- Marinara sauce , see recipe below
- Whole Wheat French Bread
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 pound hot Italian sausage
- 1 pound ground lamb
- 1 medium onion , finely chopped
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 cup bread crumbs
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon unrefined sugar
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 3/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
- 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
For the Meatballs:
- Saute onion in olive oil over medium heat until softened, about 8 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- In a medium mixing bowl, beat egg with milk and Worcestershire sauce. Mix-in the bread crumbs, salt, pepper, sugar, cheese, parsley and spices; set aside.
- Mix meats together in a large bowl, and gently mix-in the egg mixture and onion. Shape into 1" meatballs. Place meatballs on a rimmed parchment-lined baking sheet. Broil on High until lightly browned, about 10-12 minutes. Cooking time will vary depending on size of meatballs. Break one open to be sure they are cooked through, extend cooking time if needed.
Preparing the Sandwiches:
- Place meatballs in marinara sauce and stir to coat and meld flavors.
- Slice the rolls in a manner that will facilitate the sandwich (I slice and remove 1" of the center of the roll to minimize the amount of bread). Mince garlic and mix into butter. Spread garlic-butter on cut side of each slice of bread. Sprinkle grated cheese on top of the garlic-butter and broil on High until lightly toasted. Watching closely to avoid over browning.
- Arrange meatballs on one slice of the toasted bread as desired; cover with 2-3 tablespoons of sauce and top with a slice of provolone cheese.Place the open sandwich under the broiler to melt the cheese. Top with the other side of garlic-cheese toast and enjoy.
- The bread and meatballs can be made ahead of time and frozen for a quick, easy meal any night of the week.
- Meatballs can be frozen and used as needed. The hot Italian sausage imparts a subtle spice, but can be substituted with regular Italian sausage.
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small sweet yellow onion -- chopped
- 2 cloves garlic -- minced
- 1/2 cup dry red wine
- 28 ounces Italian stewed tomatoes -- blended , but not pureed
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Italian herb blend
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley -- chopped
- 3 tablespoons fresh basil -- chopped
- salt and pepper
- In a medium saucepan, heat oil over medium heat and cook onion until translucent and lightly browned around the edges, 6-8 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 mintue. While the onion is cooking, blend the tomatoes in a food processor or break up with your hands into smaller pieces, but be careful to not overprocess or puree.
- Add wine and and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and tomato paste, dried herbs, and crushed red pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low and allow to cook, stirring occasionally, for about 30 mintues. Taste to adjust seasoning, adding salt and pepper, as desired.
- Stir in parsley and basil and cook for another 2-3 mintues to meld flavors.