AT A GLANCE
The molten mozzarella centre of these large-scale meatballs is a welcome and delicious surprise. These are a great low-key entertaining option - you can prepare the sauce and the meatballs in advance, assemble them in their baking dishes and have them ready to pop in the oven just before guests arrive.
|01||For tomato-chilli sugo, process all ingredients in a food processor to a fine purée and season to taste. Transfer to a large saucepan, bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, reduce heat to medium and cook until thickened (10-15 minutes).|
|02||Meanwhile, heat half the oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat, add onion and garlic, and sauté until tender (4-5 minutes). Transfer to a bowl, cool completely, then add sausage meat, breadcrumbs, parmesan, egg, parsley and chilli, and mix well. Divide mixture into 4, then flatten each out to an oval. Dust a mozzarella half in flour, place in the centre of an oval, fold to enclose and roll to seal and form a ball. Set aside on a tray and repeat with remaining meat and mozzarella, then cover and refrigerate to rest for 30 minutes.|
|03||Preheat oven to 180C. Heat remaining oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat, add meatballs and brown all over (4-5 minutes). Place each meatball in a shallow ovenproof bowl, ladle tomato sauce over and drizzle with a little extra-virgin olive oil. Scatter with extra parmesan, season to taste and bake until bubbling and cooked through (15-20 minutes). Serve hot scattered with basil and with crusty bread.|
SAVOURY SANGIOVESE. , suggested by MAX ALLEN