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Meatball and mozzarella pan bake

  • serves 6
  • A little effort

This easy meatball and mozzarella pan bake is a one-pot that will please everyone. You can't plate this up politely, so just put it in the middle of the table.

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Ingredients

  • onion 2 small, grated
  • lean beef mince 250g
  • lean pork mince 250g
  • fresh breadcrumbs 125g
  • fennel seeds 1 tbsp, crushed
  • dried oregano 1 tsp
  • egg 1
  • olive oil for frying
  • garlic 2 cloves, crushed
  • bay leaves 3
  • chopped tomatoes 400g tin
  • passata 600ml
  • tomato purée 2 tbsp
  • brown sugar 1 tbsp
  • red wine vinegar 1 tbsp
  • mozzarella 250g (a large block), grated
  • mascarpone 100g

Method

  • Step 1

    Put half the onion, all of the beef and pork mince, breadcrumbs, fennel seeds, oregano and egg in a bowl with plenty of seasoning. Mix everything with your hands really well, then shape into 20 meatballs. Heat 1 tbsp oil in an ovenproof frying pan and brown the meatballs in batches, adding more oil as you need – the meatballs should be almost cooked through. Once browned, scoop out of the pan and onto a plate.

  • Step 2

    Add the rest of the onion to the pan with another tbsp of olive oil. Fry gently until soft, then add the garlic, and fry for a couple of minutes more. Add the bay leaves, tomatoes, passata, purée, brown sugar and red wine vinegar to the frying pan, and bring to a simmer. Bubble for 20 minutes until the sauce has reduced and thickened, and the surface is glistening. Add back the meatballs.

  • Step 3

    Mix 200g of the grated mozzarella with the mascarpone and a little salt. Spoon the cheesy mascarpone over the meatballs in dollops, and scatter over the remaining grated mozzarella.

  • Step 4

    Heat the oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5. Bake for 30 minutes until the meatballs are piping hot and cooked through, and the top is golden and bubbling. Let the dish cool for 5 minutes, then add a drizzle of olive oil before spooning straight from the dish. Serve with crusty bread, pasta or rice.

Nutritional Information

  • Kcals 698
  • Fat 40.6g
  • Saturates 20.2g
  • Carbs 34.1g
  • Fibre 4.7g
  • Protein 46.6g
  • Salt 1.3g
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