The Franks | Yield: 6, about 18-20 meatballs
The Franks (as they are lovingly known) cook hearty meatballs studded with pine nuts and golden raisins. This epitomizes this pair's culinary style--simple, homey and robust.
- 4 slices bread, (about 2 packed cups’ worth)
- 2 pounds Ground Beef
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup Pecorino Romano, grated, plus about 1 cup for serving
- 1/4 cup raisins
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 15 turns white pepper
- 4 large eggs
- 1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
- Your favorite tomato sauce, for serving
- Heat the oven to 325 degrees F. Put the fresh bread in a bowl, cover it with water, and let it soak for a minute or so. Pour off the water and wring out the bread, then crumble and tear it into tiny pieces.
- Combine the bread with all the remaining ingredients except the tomato sauce in a medium mixing bowl, adding them in the order they are listed. Add the dried bread crumbs last to adjust for wetness: the mixture should be moist wet, not sloppy wet.
- Shape the meat mixture into handball-sized meatballs and space them evenly on a baking sheet. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. The meatballs will be firm but still juicy and gently yielding when they’re cooked through. (At this point, you can cool the meatballs and hold them in the refrigerator for as long as a couple of days or freeze them for the future.)
- Meanwhile, heat the tomato sauce in a sauté pan large enough to accommodate the meatballs comfortably.
- Dump the meatballs into the pan of sauce and nudge the heat up ever so slightly. Simmer the meatballs for half an hour or so (this isn’t one of those cases where longer is better) so they can soak up some sauce. Keep them there until it’s time to eat.
- Serve the meatballs 3 to a person in a healthy helping of the red sauce, and hit everybody’s portion—never the pan—with a fluffy mountain of grated cheese. Reserve the leftover tomato sauce (it will be super-extra-delicious) and use it anywhere tomato sauce is called for.