I can do no wrong when I put a honkin' great bowl of pasta and meatballs on the table. I can't buy too many handbags, or stay out too late with my girlfriends, or spend too long in the shower, or order too many cookbooks online, or take too long to choose a lip gloss. Nope, I'm a pasta and meatball angel.
Tagliatelle with Cheat's Meatballs and Cherry Tomatoes
Slightly adapted from Valli Little's Home Cooking
For the Pasta:
6 Italian pork sausages
250g cherry tomatoes halved, as many different colours as you can get your hands on
1/4 cup cup basil leaves, finely shredded
1/2 cup parmesan, finely grated
For the Sauce:
600g tomato passata
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 sprig basil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Take the meat out of the sausage casing and roll it into walnut-size balls. Chill them for 30 minutes to firm up.
Put the oil into a large frying pan, one big enough for all the pasta to fit in at the end, and heat over medium heat. Add the meatballs and cook, turning until browned all over. Remove the meatballs to a plate.
Put the same pan on a low heat and add the garlic and fennel seeds and cook for 30 seconds. Add the tomato passata and basil sprig and 1/4 cup of water. Stir and bring to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes. Remove the basil, season the sauce with salt and pepper.
Return the meatballs to the pan of sauce and add the halved cherry tomatoes and balsamic vinegar. Cook for 5 minutes.
Cook the pasta to packet instructions.
Put the drained pasta into the sauce and toss to coat. Sprinkle with finely grated parmesan and chopped basil.