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John’s Tomato Sauce with Veal Meatballs


John uses prosciutto as the pork component for its rich texture and flavor.

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Rate this recipe 4.1/5 (9 Votes)


  • Ingredients:
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 28-ounce can pureed tomatoes
  • 1 red bell pepper, roasted andfinely chopped or pureed
  • 10 leaves fresh basil
  • Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 servings Meatballs
  • Meatballs
  • Ingredients:
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 red bell pepper, roasted
  • 1/4 pound sliced prosciutto, roughly chopped
  • 5 fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 pound ground veal
  • 1/2 pound ground beef (85-90% lean)
  • 1 sweet onion (Vidalia or Walla Walla; substitute yellow onion), finely chopped
  • 1 cup unseasoned bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for the table
  • 2 teaspoons kosher or sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 eggs


Servings 8
Preparation time 10mins
Cooking time 45mins
Adapted from


Step 1

In a large saucepan over medium-low heat, warm oil and gently sautegarlic, add canned tomatoes and bell pepper basil mixture, season with salt and pepper to taste

Heat oven to 350°. Place garlic and bell pepper in a food processor and pulse a few times to break them up. Add prosciutto and basil and pulse until well combined. Remove to a large bowl. Add remaining ingredients (through eggs) and mix with your hands until well combined. Form into golf ball-sized balls. Place on a baking sheet and bake about 15 minutes.

Remove from oven and gently fry until golden and aadd to gravy

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