Greek meatballs with tomato sauce

Jill Dupleix
Meatballs Photo: James Brickwood

Make them ahead; fry, grill, bake or steam them; cover them with sauce; stuff them into rolls and sandwiches; or toss them through pasta.


3 thick slices white bread, crustless

150ml red wine

500g minced beef or lamb

1 small onion, grated

2 garlic cloves, finely grated

Half a beaten egg

1 tbsp chopped parsley

2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp ground cinnamon

Sea salt and pepper

500ml tomato passata

2 tbsp tomato paste

2 tbsp tomato sauce (ketchup)

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp sugar


1. Heat the oven to 200C. Tear the bread into pieces and soak in the red wine. Squeeze lightly, reserving the red wine, and combine the bread with the minced meat, onion, half the garlic, the egg, parsley, cumin, cinnamon, sea salt and pepper. Mix lightly, using your hands. Form into generous balls, place on a non-stick baking tray and brush with olive oil. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden (or pan-fry in olive oil if you prefer).

2. Combine the reserved red wine with the tomato passata, paste, ketchup, olive oil, remaining garlic and sugar in a pan, and simmer for 20 minutes until thick. Add the meatballs and simmer in the sauce for 10 minutes. Serve with crusty bread.