‘Big on flavour’: Jamie Oliver’s ‘simple’ meatball and pasta dish with unusual ingredient

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Jamie Oliver has shared a plethora of delicious recipes throughout his career, including both sweet and savoury. Appearing back on the television screens for a new series tonight, the celebrity chef has shared a simple meatballs and pasta recipe with a tasty tomato sauce.

Sharing the recipe on his website, the famous chef said: “This really easy beef and pork meatball recipe with simple tomato sauce delivers big on flavour.

“A simple, wholesome dinner for the whole family.”

The dish takes just 45 minutes to cook and will serve four people.

What’s more, the chef has said the recipe is not too tricky to master.


– 12 Jacob’s cream crackers

– Four sprigs of fresh rosemary

– Two heaped teaspoons Dijon mustard

– 500g pinched beef, pork, or a mixture of the two

– One heaped teaspoon dried oregano

– One large free range egg

– Olive oil

– One bunch of fresh basil

– One medium onion

– Two cloves of garlic

– 1/2 a fresh or dried red chilli

– Two x 400g tin of plum tomatoes

– Two tablespoons balsamic vinegar

– 400g dried spaghetti or penne

– Parmesan cheese

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Start the recipe by wrapping the crackers in a tea towel and smashing them until fine.

Although not a typical ingredient in a meatball and pasta dish, the crackers will add some texture to the meatballs.

Next, add them to a bowl before adding the rosemary, mustard, minced meat and oregano.

Crack the egg into the bowl and then add some salt and pepper for taste.

With clean hands, mix everything up into the bowl before diving into four large balls.

Then, with wet hands, divide each ball into six and roll into the meatballs, there should be 24.

Place the meatballs onto a plate and drizzle with oil before placing them into the fridge to firm up.

Next, Jamie said to pick the basil leaves before peeling and finely chopping the onion and garlic as well as the chilli.

Heat two tablespoons of oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat, add the onion and cook for around seven minutes, or until softened.

Add the garlic and chilli and then add the large basil leaves.

Next, tip in the tomatoes and break them up with the back of a spoon, then add the balsamic vinegar and season to taste.

Bring to a boil before reducing to a simmer.

In another frying pan, heat one tablespoon of oil and add the meatballs before cooking for eight to 10 minutes, or until cooked through.

Once cooked, add the meatballs to the sauce and simmer while you cook the pasta.

Jamie recommends cooking the pasta in boiled salted water.

Next, spoon half the tomato sauce over the pasta and toss it altogether, adding a little splash of reserved cooking water to loosen, if needed.

Transfer to bowls and serve the remaining sauce and meatballs on top.

Add a sprinkling of Parmesan and scatter over a small amount of basil.

Jamie added: “If you like a smooth sauce just whiz it in a blender – just give it a chance to cool slightly before you do.”

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