Spaghetti Meatballs Tomato Bell Pepper Sauce

This recipe isn’t really extraordinary, but it has a few twists that make it a little bit different.

First, the meatballs were made using veal instead of beef or pork, making a milder and softer ball. I also added some parmesan and a little bit of day old white bread in small pieces. Salt and pepper, too.

Secondly, the tomato sauce was made by combining a can of very good italian tomatoes (Datterini by „Mutti“), which are date(sized) tomatoes with a wonderful sweetness. To these tomatoes I added a jar of chicken stock without salt and two red bell peppers. I used a potato masher to mash the datterini, and smoothed the sauce in a blender once the bell peppers were done. To this mixture I added a Serrano chili, but you decide if you want that heat. All I had to do was to reduce the sauce to make it a little bit more full-bodied. Check the seasoning and put the raw meatballs into the sauce to slowly simmer until they’re done. Add a little bit of lemon zest.

Cook the spaghetti (I like to use the De Cecco brand, they use brass spouts to process their pasta, which roughens it and allows it to absorb more sauce than conventionally produced pasta.

All you have to do once everything is ready is to give it a dusting of fresh parmesan.

The dish itself is a kind of anachronism, because of the attempt to make it as italian as possible, when in reality the meatball is a thoroughly american invention 🙂

Don’t get me wrong: there are italian dishes that have small salsiccia meatballs, but the standard spaghetti and meatballs present on every italian restaurant in the USA is an american invention.

That said, there is nothing at all wrong with that, I grew up with them and like them from time to time 🙂






Leftovers-Kalbsgeschnetzeltes mexikanisch

After the veal saltimbocca the night before, there were pieces of veal left over as well as some mushroom risotto.

Even though I had decided not to visit the very good Saturday market in Pforzheim, my extensive bicycle excursion had somehow gotten me there without my realizing it. It was just winding down (about 1 pm) and I remembered having found a produce merchant who had hard-to-find chiles. Sure enough, there he was, and I was able to get a few poblanos, a couple of jalapenos and one that looks like a light green squash.

In the evening I decided to make a kind of veal ragout with the poblanos as the vegetable. This was served with the warmed up risotto.

It had a heat you didn’t feel at first but that grew on you after a couple of bites.

Very pleasant!

1 shallot, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

4 chiles poblanos, in strips

1/2 tsp coriander seeds

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp oregano

1/2 tsp ground paprika

salt pepper

Cut the veal into strips, fry the shallot and garlic, add the veal and the chiles.

Just cook long enough for the chiles to soften and the meat to brown slightly.

Add the spices, salt and pepper to taste. Serve with the risotto.

For a little extra punch I cut some fresh jalapeno for garnish…


Another attempt/Noch’n Dinner

I had very special guests for this dinner, but very little time, because it was to happen on a Friday, which left little time to prepare. Nonetheless, I was able to make the dessert in advance, especially since it requires a settling period.

It was a relatively simple dinner, with a focus on local and current products. To cut through the doublespeak- the current products were chanterelles (Germans call them Pfifferlinge), and apricots for the other dessert. Enough local and current already!

The first course, not depicted, was a salad whose only claim to fame were the radish roundsthat gave the salad color. I had entertained a fantasy of blueberries and walnuts as additions, but I was simply too poor ( at the moment).

Nonetheless, the salad was good.

Then came the saltimbocca, something I’ve posted before. Still. take a few slices of veal schnitzel (pork won’t do for this recipe) and flatten with a bottle or other soft device and cut into bite-sized pieces.

Use a real Parma ham and place a same-sized piece on the piece of veal. Then find a sage leaf and pin that on the meat with a toothpick. I was given a gift of a sage plant, so that is what I used, but the leaves were tiny, so I chopped some extra to spread over the meat.

The risotto I’ve also described several times, but maybe not in English.

Take a measure of round kernel rice (Arborio or a similar Italian rice), sauté the rice in olive oil. Don’t brown, just sautè until translucent. Deglaze with a glass of white wine. Stir.

Add vegetable broth (or broth from a glass) bit by bit, but never more than covering the top of the rice. Stir all the time. Add broth as needed, almost a quart, all in all.

They always say it takes 20 minutes, like regular rice, With me it takes 25-30 minutes to get a grainy, chewy texture.

Then add almost 2 ounces (50 grams) of Parmesan chesse, grated and the same amount of butter.

The mushrooms should be sauteéd with onions and garlic to soften them. You can also add some bacon or speck.

These are then added to the risotto when it’s done.


For the desserts I bought industrially-made puff pastry.

I cut the bottoms and the tops and the round windows out of the tops.

The apricots were thrown into boiling water for 20 seconds and skinned and halved.

The rest of the apricots were cooked with an equal amount of brown sugar to make marmelade.

Some of the marmelade gets put on the bottom of the pastry. Then you just add the half apricot and push it into the oven for 20 minutes at 180 Celsius.

For the lime créme
11/2 sheets of white gelatin
110 ml lime juice
65 g sugar
250 g natural joghurt
rind of an untreated lime

250 g sweet cream

steep the gelatin in water to soften it, squeeze dry.

Combine the lime juice and sugar to dissolve the sugar. Cool.

Add the joghurt, whip the cream and combine.



I thought it was good, I think my folks would agree.