Turkey Meatballs in Grilled Roma Tomato Sauce

I am so glad I made a huge batch of my Grilled Roma Tomato Sauce and froze a number of jars because it went really well with my turkey meatballs.
For the meatballs- start with 1 pound of ground turkey thigh in a large bowl. To that, add:
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped
  • a few tablespoons of chopped fresh basil
  • pinch of sea salt
  • fresh ground black pepper
Mix this all well with your hands and form golfball-sized meatballs on a separate plate.
Heat 4-5 TB olive oil on medium-high heat in a heavy skillet. When hot, add the meatballs and let them cook a few minutes before rotating them a bit. I like to brown mine on all sides and I’m not too picky about little pieces falling off of some meatballs as I flip them. After 10 minutes or so, add 1/2 cup red wine, let it start to sizzle like crazy, cover, and reduce the heat to medium. Let this cook a few more minutes and then add it all, and I mean ALL… pan juices, burnt-to-the-bottom turkey bits, etc. – to a pot of hot Grilled Roma Tomato Sauce.
Finish cooking the meatballs all the way through in the sauce. Serve with warm crusty bread, parmesan cheese, and whatever else you like.


Turkey Meatball Pizza

I had some pizza dough in the freezer, and left-over turkey meatballs in my homemade sauce, so it was easy to throw together a pizza with sliced pepper and fresh mozzarella cheese.

Turkey Meatballs and Homemade Tomato Sauce

I am mostly vegetarian. I was a strict vegetarian for years, and a few years ago, while living abroad, I decided I needed to start eating chicken in order to be able to eat since there was no such thing as “vegetarian” food in Bolivian villages. I am not a big fan of chicken right now for lots of reasons not worth getting into here on my blog. However, I do enjoy turkey, especially ground turkey, which I use to make turkey meatballs.
I would love to say that I go so far as to grind my own turkey. I don’t. I buy ground turkey from Whole Foods that already comes with salt, pepper, parmesan cheese, and a few other herbs. I make some meatballs with it, pan fry them in a little olive oil until they are brown on all sides, and them pour in some red wine, cover the pan, and let them cook on medium until they are almost cooked through in their red wine gravy.
Meanwhile, I make a homemade sauce.

For my sauce:
Start by sautéing a yellow onion in some red wine on medium high until it is soft. Then add two 28 ounce cans of whole peeled San Marzano tomatoes. Start to break the tomatoes in pieces with a spoon as you stir. It may take a while to break these down, but just keep going back to the pot over the course of the next 30 minutes or so, breaking them down each time you stir.
After adding the tomatoes, keep the heat of medium high until it starts to boil. Then add 3-4 cloves chopped garlic, stir, and turn down the heat to medium low. Then add some fresh ground pepper, some sea salt, and stir well. Sometimes I add a pinch of raw sugar, but I’m not sure you need to.
Let this simmer until the meatballs are ready to be added. Then turn the heat back up to medium high. Add some fresh chopped basil and stir. All of the tomatoes should be at least coarsely chopped by now. Add the meatballs, and all of their juices, into the pot, mix well, and let it boil for 10-15 minutes to be sure all of the turkey is cooked.
Enjoy with whatever you like. I just had mine in a bowl with some warm bread olive oil and basil.
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