Meatballs with White Wine, Lemon and Bay Leaves

9:54 pm on 13 October 2008


  • 500 grams minced pork
  • 100 grams pecorino cheese – or parmesan - grated
  • 100 grams dried breadcrumbs – 1 cup
  • 1/3 cup parsley, chopped
  • zest and juice of a lemon
  • salt
  • 2 eggs
  • olive oil
  • 2 glasses of white wine
  • hot water
  • 8 bay leaves


In a large bowl place the minced pork, grated cheese, breadcrumbs, parsley, lemon zest and salt.

Mix together with the egg. Either with a wooded spoon – or I like to use my hands (with cloves on) – very satisfying to feel the mixture squelching through your fingers.

Form the mixture into small balls. Wet hands or hands make it easier.

Heat a thin layer of oil in a pan – large enough to take the meatballs without over crowding. Fry on a medium heat for about 10 minutes until nicely browned on all sides. Shake the pan a little to make sure they are not sticking.

Add the wine; turn the heat up cook for a few minutes to let the alcohol burn off.

Pour in enough hot water just to cover the meatballs. Add the bay leaves and leave to simmer until the sauce is well reduced and starting to become syrupy.

Add the lemon juice and zest and cook a few minutes more.

Remove the meatballs with a slotted spoon into a serving dish. If the sauce is still too runny, thicken very slightly with potato starch and cold water. Bring to the boil.

Spoon over the pan juices and serve with pasta, polenta, risotto or potatoes.

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