Meatball Sub Sandwich

Sandwiched

The greatest column since sliced bread.

Meatball Sub Sandwich
  • Yield:Makes 4 sandwiches
  • Active time:1 hour
  • Total time:1 hour
This recipe appears in:
Sandwiched: Meatball Sub

Notes:

  • To adjust seasoning on meatballs, cook one, taste, then adjust seasoning.
  • You can buy packaged ground beef, such as chuck, and pork, but you can also grind your own. I prefer well-marbled cuts like short rib and country-style pork ribs or shoulder.

Ingredients

  • For the Meatballs:
  • 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup (1 ounce) grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 anchovy fillets, finely chopped
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped (about 3/4 cup)
  • 3 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated zest plus 1 tablespoon juice from 1 lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 pound ground beef (see notes above)
  • 1/2 pound ground pork (see notes above)
  •  
  • For the Sauce and Assembly:
  • 4 (6-inch long) semolina or hero rolls
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 (28-ounce) can plum tomatoes
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped (about 3/4 cup)
  • 3 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves
  • Shredded parmesan to tate

Directions

  1. 1.

    For the Meatballs: Combine breadcrumbs, milk, egg, cheese, parsley, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in large bowl. Set aside.

  2. 2.

    In large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add anchovies and cook until disintegrated, about 2 minutes. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic, oregano, lemon zest and juice, and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Transfer mixture to bowl with breadcrumb mixture and stir to combine.

  3. 3.

    Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Using fingers, work beef and pork into breadcrumb mixture until thoroughly combined. To make rolling easier, set a bowl of cold water next to work area. Shape mixture into 1 1/2-inch meatballs, rolling between palms and dampening hands with water throughout assembly. Set meatballs on prepared baking sheet as they are completed.

  4. 4.

    Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in now empty skillet over medium-high heat until beginning to smoke. Cook half of meatballs until well browned on all sides, about 5 minutes. With slotted spoon, transfer to second baking sheet or large plate. Add remaining meatballs and cook as before. Do not discard fat after cooking.

  5. 5.

    For the Sauce and Assembly: Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 300°F. Split rolls in half lengthwise and brush cut sides with olive oil. Set aside.

  6. 6.

    Crush tomatoes with hands. Heat rendered fat in now empty skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Add meatballs and accumulated juices to sauce, reduce heat to maintain a gently simmer, and cook until meatballs are cooked through and sauce has thickened, 12 to 15 minutes. Meanwhile, place split rolls in the oven to toast.

  7. 7.

    Fill toasted rolls with meatballs, spoon with sauce, and top with cheese shards. Serve immediately.

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