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Michela Chippa's meatballs and cheesy mash

Classic meatballs get an upgrade. Mouthwatering Italian ingredients paired with cheesy parmesan mashed potato and tomato sauce - Michela’s meatballs make for a delicious midweek meal.

Meatballs & Parmesan Mash 

Serves: 4 - 6

Ingredients 

For The Sauce 

Handful basil leaves, chopped and reserve a few for garnish

1 tbsp olive oil

1 onion peeled and finely chopped

1 garlic clove crushed

1 x 400g tin or chopped tomatoes

1 teaspoon sugar

1 tablespoon tomato puree

Pinch cayenne pepper

1 stock cube of choice

For The Meatballs

500g Italian sausage meat (or any minced meat you prefer)

100g freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1 clove garlic peeled and grated

1 small onion grated

100g breadcrumbs (fine very dry breadcrumbs)

1 medium egg

1/2 teaspoon ground fennel seeds

A small handful of chopped fresh parsley

1 teaspoon fine salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon olive oil

For Mash

4 medium/large potatoes (approx 1.5kg)

100g grated Parmesan

50g butter

30ml olive oil

Salt and pepper for seasoning

Method

1. Start by making the tomato sauce. Heat the oil in a pan over a medium high heat and add the chopped onion and garlic. 

2. Saute for a couple of minutes until soft then add the tomatoes, cayenne and crumble in the stock cube. Allow the sauce to simmer gently for 10 to15 mins.  Stir in chopped basil.

3. Meanwhile the meatballs, put all the ingredients apart from the oil into a large bowl and mix together with your hands.  

4. Shape into walnut sized balls and set aside. 

5. Now make the mash, peel and chop the potatoes and place into boiling water and boil until soft. 

6. Cook the meatballs for about 10mins turning regularly until browned all over and cooked through. (For a healthier option you can bake the meatballs in the oven at 180C/ Gas 4 for about 30 mins until golden brown and cooked through)

7. Drain potatoes and let them steam for a few minutes then mash thoroughly. 

8. Add most of the butter and olive oil plus approx 2 handfuls of the Parmesan and season with salt and pepper. 

9. Heat oil in a frying pan over a medium heat and cook the meatballs for about 10mins turning regularly until browned all over and cooked through. 

10. To serve, spread the mash on a heated plate and then drizzle olive oil and some butter on the hot mash so that it melts, add the left over grated Parmesan and then top with the tomato sauce and finish with the meatballs. Garnish with reserved basil leaves. 

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