The courgettes meatballs in “pizzaiola” are appetizing morsels of soft consistency wrapped in an aromatic tomato sauce flavored with basil and enriched by the racy touch of mozzarella.
• Courgettes: 280 g (9,87 oz)
• Stale bread: 250 g (8,81 oz)
• Eggs: 1 medium
• Whole milk: 60 g (2,11 oz)
• Breadcrumbs: 120 g (4,23 oz)
• Basil: as needed
• Tomato pulp: 150 g (5,29 oz)
• Garlic: 1 clove
• Mozzarella: 90 g (3,17 oz)
• Extra virgin olive oil: as needed
• Salt: as needed
• Black pepper: as needed
1) To prepare the courgettes meatballs in “pizzaiola”, first cut the bread and coarse pieces, then place it in a bowl and pour over the milk. Break the bread with your hands so that it absorbs the milk better and keep aside. Wash and check the courgettes, then cut them into fairly thick slices. Pour a little oil into a saucepan, add the courgettes and brown over medium heat with the lid on. Shake the casserole from time to time and cook for about 10 minutes.
2) Remove from heat, transfer the courgettes into a bowl and allow to cool. In a mixer pour the courgettes, the soaked bread and the basil leaves, operate the robot to chop the ingredients and then add the breadcrumbs, salt and pepper.
3) Blend the mixture again, then add the egg too. Continue to blend until the dough is homogeneous (if you do not have a robot, you can crush the courgettes with a fork and finely chop the basil with a knife and mix together with everything else in a bowl). Transfer the dough into a bowl and form balls, lay them on a tray: you will get about 24-26 with this dose. Once ready, put them in the fridge for about 30 minutes to make them firm. Prepare the “pizzaiola” sauce: heat a saucepan with a round of oil, add the whole clove of garlic (or poached if you prefer) and let it sauté, then pour the tomato pulp.
4) Flavor with fresh and salted basil, cook the tomato sauce for about 5 minutes over a gentle heat. Add the meatballs in the sauce by distancing them well and cook for about 5 minutes. If the sauce is too thick, stretch with a little water when needed.
5) You can gently turn the meatballs halfway through cooking. Cut the mozzarella into very thin slices and place them on the meatballs, cover with the lid and wait for the cheese to melt on a very low flame: it will take a few minutes. At this point serve your meatballs hot.
Substitute the courgettes with other vegetables to make this recipe suitable for all seasons. Add grated pecorino or parmesan cheese to the dough to get a stronger flavor. Keep the courgettes balls in “pizzaiola” in the refrigerator and consume them within 3 days. Raw meatballs can be frozen.
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