Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs

It turns out that you can make a lot of dinners with one pound of ground meat.  I made meatball subs one night and then had enough left over for this savory dish.  It seems simple, but it is too good and easy not to share with you all for your next weeknight dinner.


1/2 cup minced shallot
1 cup panko bread crumbs
1 lb ground beef (best quality you can find)
1 egg, whisked
1 teaspoon ground pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
5 small fresh mozzarella ciliegine, drained + more for topping if you desire
1 box of large pasta shells

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Heat 1 tablespoon butter in a large saute pan.  When hot add the minced shallot and let cook about two minutes.  Remove from heat.
2.  In a small bowl combine bread crumbs and egg.  Let sit at least five minutes.
3.  In a food processor add meat, egg, breadcrumb mixture, onions, salt and pepper.  Pulse to combine (about 30 seconds).
4.  From into 1 inch round balls and set aside on a plate
5.  With clean hands use a paper towel to press water out of the mozzarella
6.  Cut each mozzarella into 4 pieces
7.  For each meatball press your thumb into the middle and place the mozzarella piece in the meatball.  Pull the meatball over the mozzarella until the cheese is covered
8.  Repeat and place on a cookie sheet
9.  Cook in preheated oven about 35-40 minutes until the meatballs are nice and browned and cooked inside
10. Meanwhile boil water and cook pasta shells according to package
11. Prep tomato sauce or favorite spaghetti sauce and heat in a pan
12. When meatballs are ready combine pasta, meatballs, sauce in a baking dish and top with extra mozzarella if you have it
13. Place under the broiler for 3-4 minutes until the cheese is nice and brown

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