Meatballs with orzo pasta
- 500g lean beef mince
- ½ teaspoon chilli flakes
- zest of 1 lemon
- 4 tablespoons chopped fresh flatleaf parsley or coriandercilantroX
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- spray ol
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2 tablespoons tomato purée
- 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
- 1 cup orzo
- 4 tablespoons ricotta
- To serve
- 150g mixed salad leaves
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 Put the mince, chilli flakes, lemon zest and half the fresh and dried herbs in a medium bowl and season with black pepper. Wet your hands, then combine the ingredients. Shape rounded teaspoons of the mixture into 28–32 small balls (if making ahead, freeze the meatballs in a freezer proof container at this stage, then thaw thoroughly before continuing).
2 Spray a large, deep, non-stick frying pan with oil and set over a medium-high heat. Add the meatballs (in batches, if necessary) and cook for 5–6 min, turning, until browned. Transfer to a plate. Re-spray the pan with oil, then cook the onion and garlic for 5 min or until soft. Add the remaining dried oregano with the tomato purée and cook, stirring, for 1 min. Add the chopped tomatoes and bring to the boil.
3 Return all the meatballs to the frying pan and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 10–15 min until the meatballs are cooked through and the sauce is thickened.
4 Meanwhile, cook the orzo in unsalted water according to the pack instructions, then drain and divide among 4 bowls. Spoon over the meatballs and sauce, top with a dollop of ricotta, then scatter over the remaining parsley or coriander and some ground black pepper. Toss the salad leaves with the vinegar, then serve alongside.
Nutrition Info (per serve)
Total fat 9.3g
–Saturated fat 4g
Dietary fibre 6.9g
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