Polpette di brasato
"My longtime friend Viola Buitoni is a chef instructor in San Francisco and one of the best cooks I know. Enjoy her recipes!" - Franluca
For 6 to 8 people
2 slices day old bread
milk for soaking the bread
1/2 pound leftover brasato
2 slices prosciutto
1/4 pound ground veal
1/4 pound ground pork
1 small handful parsley leaves
1 egg + 1 yolk
1 tablespoons grated parmigiano
grated zest of half lemon
nutmeg to taste
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 yellow onion
1 celery stalk
2 tablespoons lard or olive oil
splash white wine
2 tablespoons tomato concentrate
Soak the bread in milk until soft. Squeeze it lightly and place it in a food processor bowl. Add the brasato and prosciutto slices. Process until ground finely but not into a paste. Transfer to a bowl.
Pick and mince the parsley.
Add the ground meats, egg, yolk, parmigiano, parsley and zest. Season to taste with nutmeg salt and pepper.
Mix all ingredients together well with your hands.
Wet your palms and roll round meatballs of about 2" in diameter.
Set aside on a plate.
Slice the onions, carrot and celery thinly.
Heat half the lard in a sauté pan and brown the meatballs in it, in batches if necessary to keep them from overcrowding the pan. Transfer to a platter.
Add the rest of the lard to the sauté pan and soften the sliced vegetables in it for about 10 minutes over medium heat and with a generous pinch of salt.
Place the browned meatballs back in the pan and turn up the heat.
After approximately 2 minutes, deglaze with the wine. When the smell of the wine has gone from pungent to sweet, add the tomato concentrate and about 1 cup of hot water. Bring to a simmer and turn the heat down to medium low.
Cover the meatballs and braise them slowly for 20 to 25 minutes, adding small amounts of water if necessary. Keep in mind that the liquid should come to no more than 1/3 of the way up the meatballs.
The sauce will darken and thicken while the meatballs cook.
Transfer to a platter and douse with the cooking sauce.
Serve hot with a salad and some crusty bread.
as first published on
Viola's Italian Kitchen