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Veal Ricotta Meatballs with Creamy Mascarpone Polenta, San Marzano Tomato Ragout.

Veal Ricotta Meatballs with Creamy Mascarpone Polenta, San Marzano Tomato Ragout


Veal + Ricotta Meatballs

1 Pound Ground Veal Shoulder

1 Pound Ground Beef Chuck

2 cups Ricotta Cheese (Drained overnight in a fine mesh sieve)

2 Eggs

1 cup Finely Grated Parmesan Cheese

2 tsp. Crushed Red Pepper

2 tsp. Minced Garlic

3 Tbsp. Minced Onion

1 Tbsp. Chopped Parsley

2 dashes Tabasco

2 Tbsp. Roasted Red Peppers, Diced Small

1 cup + 2 Tbsp. Bread Crumbs (preferably from artisan bread like ciabatta)

2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 Tbsp. Kosher Salt

½ tsp. Ground Black Peppercorn

Creamy Mascarpone Polenta

1 Cup Coarse Ground Polenta (Such as Anson Mills)

2 ½ Cups Whole Milk

2 ½ Cups Chicken or Vegetable Broth

1 ½ tsp. Ground Cumin

½ Cup Finely Grated Parmesan Cheese

½ Cup Mascarpone Cheese

tsp. Kosher Salt

San Marzano Tomato Ragout

2 28 oz. Cans of whole peeled San Marzano tomatoes

1 Tbsp. Minced Garlic

½ Cup Minced Onion

2 tsp. Crushed Red Pepper

1 Tbsp. Chopped Oregano

2 Tbsp. Chopped Italian Basil

2 Tbsp. Kosher Salt

2 tsp. Ground Black Pepper

3 Tbsp. Louis M. Martini Extra Virgin Olive Oil


Veal + Ricotta Meatballs

1. Preheat the oven to 425˚F. Lightly oil a large baking tray.

2. Combine the drained ricotta with ground beef and veal in a large mixing bowl.

3. Add eggs, onion, garlic, roasted pepper, parsley and Parmesan cheese, then season with Tabasco, salt and pepper.

4. Mix by hand until thoroughly incorporated, then gradually add the bread crumbs while continuing to mix until bread crumbs are completely incorporated.

5. Scoop the mixture into 1 ½ – inch balls and arrange on oiled baking tray. Be sure to not overcrowd the tray, as you want color to develop on each meatball.

6. Place in oven, and rotate occasionally for about 12 minutes, or until they are just cooked through.

7. Remove from the oven and place them into the simmering tomato sauce using a pair of tongs or a slotted spoon.

8. Serve over a soft bed of creamy mascarpone polenta and top with some fresh shaved Parmesan or Pecorino Cheese.


Creamy Mascarpone Polenta

1. Combine milk, broth, salt and cumin in a heavy bottom sauce pot, and bring to a boil.

2. Slowly add polenta whisking constantly until there is no lumps.

3. Reduce heat to a low simmer and continue to whisk until the polenta starts to thicken. At this point the polenta should be slightly loose.

4. Continue to cook over very low heat for about 35 minutes, stirring occasionally and making sure the bottom is not being scorched. Polenta is fully cooked when the texture is creamy, and the individual grains are tender.

5. Remove from heat and add parmesan and mascarpone cheese. Mix until the cheese is fully incorporated.

6. Adjust seasoning as desired and keep warm until service.

Note: If the polenta becomes too stiff or cold, just add a little warm broth to bring it back to the desired consistency.


San Marzano Tomato Ragout

1. Heat olive oil in heavy bottom sauce pan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and sweat until onion is translucent.

2. Add tomatoes, crushed red pepper, salt and pepper and bring to a simmer.

3. Continue to simmer over low heat for 45 minutes until the tomatoes begin to break down.

4. Add basil and oregano, then taste. Adjust the seasoning as desired.

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