Spaghetti & Meatballs – Lady and the Tramp style… Food for Romance Cookalong

This #Romanticcooking cookalong.. Whether or not you buy into Valentines I’m sure at some time or other you want to have some kind of slightly romantic meal. I couldn’t tell you when my first real romantic moment was (well I could but I won’t), but this was definitely one of the first visions of romance. I remember we had the video (VHS) of Lady and the Tramp, I think it was brought to our house by our neighbours. They owned a video shop in the village called ‘Video 2000’, oh bring on the visions of lasers and synth-y music! But look at this. But let’s face it, this is romance!

Anyhow, since the theme for this month was ‘Food for Romance’, I could only see one option. Lady and the Tramp recreated! Only.. without the dogs (Unless I had my way and could have gotten puppies!). And I also had issues trying to get a bottle of Chianti to match the pic.. But here it is:


Let me tell you though, I’ve tried quite a few meatball recipes, this is my favourite so far. It was very much thrown together in the hopes of making something good, and boy did it. I shall be making these again. Lots.

Shopping list

  • 1 lb good minced beef
  • 4oz parmesan
  • 4oz of breadcrumbs
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 red onion diced finely
  • 4 large cloves garlic
  • handful of fresh basil
  • handful of  fresh parsley
  • A splash of milk (prob about 1/2 cup or so. Whole milk)

For the sauce

  • 1 onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 cartons of tomato passatta
  • about 1/2 cup red wine
  • Teaspoon of oregano
  • A few drops of tabasco
  • Olive oil
  • 1 oz of butter
  1. Ok.
  2. Meatballs first.
  3. Preheat the oven to 180*C.
  4. Very simply, dice everything and pop it in a bowl. Mix it right up and get right in there. Make into golf sized meatballs by rolling equal amounts round. This is a messy and squidgey step and kids will love it. Just make sure they wash their hands after!
  5. Pop on a tray, give a wee drizzle of olive oil, and put in oven for 35-45 minutes.
  6. In the meantime, finely dice your onion and garlic. Heat up some olive oil and your butter in a pan (or beloved le creuset), and add your onion and garlic. Fry until soft
  7. Add the red wine and give it a quick stir. It’ll sizzle. I love that sizzle sound. Then add in your two cartons of passatta, and fill each one 1/3 of teh way up with water and add that. Add your herbs, and season to taste. You may or may not need to add a spoonful of sugar! Bring to a boil, turn down to a fairly hot simmer and don’t cover, leave to reduce!
  8. When your meatballs are done and your sauce has reduced by about a 1/3, pop the meatballs into the lovely sauce, get them all down below the sauce and leave on a very low heat just so that they get acquainted and make yummy yummy loveliness while you cook your spaghetti!
  9. Put on your spaghetti and cook until just done (don’t overcook your spaghetti, it’s not ok…) in lightly salted water.
  10. Take your pot off the heat now, Grab your spaghetti and swirl it into your meatball/sauce mix, getting it thoroughly mixed up. Grab a big portion, serve on a plate and with candles on the table. If you want to go all out-  then some red wine and one plate between two of you, an italian man singing bella notte and you are gold!


14 thoughts on “Spaghetti & Meatballs – Lady and the Tramp style… Food for Romance Cookalong

    • I know! I spent about a day thinking of what to cook for the cookalong and then this giant lightbulb went off over my head (much to the surprise of the surgeons in theatre) and it came to me… 🙂 Was happy as larry with how they came out too!

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  4. i am helping my best friend’s bf make dinner for her for her 16th birthday. and she likes italian and romance so im helping her bf make this dish. i have 2 questions though. please answer. thank you….
    in the shopping list you mention 1/2 onion
    in the sauce u mention 1 onion.
    do you mean we use the same onion or buy 2 onions?
    also in #4 you say ” dice everything and pop it in a bowl. Mix it right up and get right in there. Make into golf sized meatballs by rolling equal amounts round.” do we mix the meat in with the diced ingredients?

    • Hi, great that you’re making it! You use one and a half onions in total- so buy two. You do mix the meat in too, just put everything including the meat into the bowl and give it a mix! Good luck


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