Oozy Mozzarella Stuffed Rosemary, Sage and Kale Meatballs on a Tomato and Pasta Bake

These melt in the middle herby meatballs are delicious. As a whole dish it has lots of veggies and has all those comforting flavours you want in a pasta dish. It’s nice the meatballs are baked rather than fried as all the juices and flavours go into the pasta and tomatoes. It does take a little bit of effort but it is well worth it.

Ingredients (serves 4)

For the meatballs

  • 500g pork mince
  • 2 slices of wholewheat bread (recipe here), blitzed into breadcrumbs
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • Sprig of rosemary, leaves only finely chopped
  • Sprig of sage, leaves only finely chopped
  • 100g kale, stems removed and finely chopped
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tbsp grated Parmesan
  • 1 ball of mozzarella cheese, cubed
  • 1 tsp fresh black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Drizzle of olive oil for browning

For the pasta

  • 2 shallots, peeled and finely diced
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and finely diced
  • 1 celery stalk, finely diced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp sun dried tomato paste
  • 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 300ml of chicken stock
  • 100g small pasta tubes
  • Sea salt and fresh pepper to taste

Directions

  1. pre heat oven to 180 degrees fan.
  2. Mix all the meatball ingredients in a bowl apart from the mozzarella and olive oil. Knead so everything is combined evenly.
  1. Take a small handful of the mince mixture, place a piece of mozzarella in the middle and mould the mince around it. Repeat with all the mince.
  2. Heat a drizzle of olive oil over a medium heat. Brown the meatballs all over in batches and set aside.
  3. In the same pan add the shallots, carrot and celery, cook for 5 minutes stirring occasionally so the vegetables soften. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute until fragrant. Add the tomato paste and cook out for a further minute stirring so the veggies get coated. Next add the tomatoes, stock and pasta. Season to taste.
  4. Add the meatballs into the pasta mix bake in the oven covered for 25-30 minutes or until pasta is cooked. Serve and enjoy.

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