28th February 2020

Cheesy Baked Meatballs


  • 800g mince
  • 2 slices of bread whizzed into breadcrumbs
  • ½ ground cumin
  • 1 sprig of fresh rosemary finely chopped
  • 2 level tablespoons dried oregano
  • 1 egg yolk
  • olive oil
  • 2 handfuls of fresh basil
  • 60g mozzarella cheese
  • 60g Parmesan cheese

Tomato Sauce

  • 1 large clove of garlic
  • olive oil
  • 1 small dried red chilli
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 3 x 400g tins of quality Italian plum tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 handful of fresh basil , or marjoram
  • extra virgin olive oil


  1. In a large bowl combine mince, breadcrumbs, cumin, rosemary, oregano, egg yolk and a good pinch of salt & pepper.
  2. Roll into evenly side meatballs and place in the fridge to firm up.
  3. Make the tomato sauce.
  4. Peel and finely chop the garlic, then gently fry in a thick-bottomed pan with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Crumble in the chilli, add the oregano and tomatoes.
  5. Mix gently, but do not break up the tomatoes as this will release the pips, which will make the sauce slightly bitter – by leaving the tomatoes whole and letting the mixture cook slowly you’ll get a nice sweet sauce. (You can remove the pips from the tomatoes if you want, but I don’t bother.) Bring to the boil and simmer gently for 1 hour.
  6. Add the vinegar to the pan, then stir and chop up the tomatoes in the sauce.
  7. Pick the basil or marjoram and roughly chop, then add to the pan.
  8. Season well to taste with sea salt and black pepper, and finish with 2-3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil.
  9. In a oven proof skillet sear the meatballs well.
  10. Pour over tomato sauce.
  11. Top with parmesan, mozzarella and basil.
  12. Bake at 200’c for 20 mins.
Cheesy Baked Meatballs