Smoky Meatballs in Serrano Ham-Tomato Sauce
Preparation time: 55 min
1 (1 1/2-ounce) slice white bread
1 pound 92% lean ground beef
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 large egg
2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
2 ounces serrano ham, finely chopped
2 cups chopped onion
1 1/4 cups chopped red bell pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic
1/2 cup dry sherry
1 (28-ounce) can no-salt-added whole peeled tomatoes, undrained and chopped
4 cups hot cooked fettuccine (about 8 ounces uncooked pasta)
1/4 cup (1 ounce) finely shredded aged Manchego cheese
Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (optional)
1. Place bread in a food processor; pulse 12 times or until coarse crumbs measure 1/2 cup. Combine breadcrumbs, beef, and next 7 ingredients (through egg) in a bowl. Using wet hands, shape mixture into 20 (about 2 tablespoons each) meatballs. Set aside.
2. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add ham to pan, and cook for 3 minutes or until well browned, stirring frequently. Transfer to a large bowl. Add remaining 1 teaspoon oil to pan. Add meatballs; cook for 5 minutes or until browned, turning often. Add meatballs to ham in bowl. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add onion, bell pepper, and garlic to pan; cook 5 minutes or until tender, stirring often. Add sherry; cook for 3 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Add tomatoes and meatball mixture; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes or until sauce is slightly thickened. Remove from heat, and keep warm.
3. Place 1 cup pasta in each of 4 shallow bowls; top each serving with 5 meatballs, 3/4 cup sauce, and 1 tablespoon shredded Manchego cheese. Garnish with additional parsley, if desired.