60g soft white breadcrumbs, preferably from stale bread
400g minced beef
2 fat sausages (skin off, I used chorizo sausages)
30g parmesan, grated
A grating of nutmeg
2 tbsp flat-leaf parsley finely chopped
Salt and black pepper
For the sauce
6 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
A pinch of dried chilli
750g fresh tomatoes, roughly chopped
3x400g tins plum tomatoes, chopped
Put the breadcrumbs in a small bowl with the milk and infuse for 10 minutes, or until the bread absorbs the milk. Mix together the meatball ingredients and season with salt and pepper. Using your hands, mould into balls roughly 35g in weight, then put them on a baking tray to rest while you make the sauce.
Add the tinned tomatoes, bring to a simmer, for about 45 minutes. Stir occasionally, breaking up the tomatoes with the back of a wooden spoon.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 220C/425F/gas mark 7. Bake the meatballs for 15 minutes, turning them once, until they are just starting to brown.
After 45 minutes, the sauce should be thick and rich. Blast it with an immersion blender for a smoother consistency, simply poach the meatballs in the sauce for a further 15 minutes. Then allow the meatballs and sauce to sit for at least 30 minutes before serving.
Cook 400g of pasta in plenty of well-salted, fast-boiling water. Serve with the meatballs in sauce and freshly grated parmesan.