On certain evenings the phone would ring in our apartment upstairs from my grandmother.  My grandmother would say, “Come downstairs and eat, sweetheart!”  She was serving one of my favorite meals…Spaghetti and Meatballs! I’d look up at my Mom with a huge smile across my face and say, “Mom, I’ll be back!”


1 lb. ground beef

2 eggs

2 tbsp. Ketchup

1 tbsp. yellow mustard

½ c. grated Parmesan cheese

1 tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce

2 tsp. garlic powder

2 tsp. onion powder

1 tsp. salt

½ tsp. white pepper

Handful of fresh chopped parsley

About 1 c. of fresh bread or enough to bind, soaked in a little milk

Bake the meatballs in a 350 degree oven until a little browned. They will continue cooking in the sauce. I never cook the meatballs all the way through in the oven. When they continue to cook in the sauce they add an immense amount of flavor! I only cook the meatballs until they are a little browned on the outside so that you don’t fall apart in the sauce.

In the meantime begin making your spaghetti sauce:

My Grandmother’s Spaghetti Sauce

3 tbsp. Portuguese, extra-virgin or Spanish olive oil

1/2 green bell pepper, chopped

1 onion, chopped

4 cloves of garlic, minced

1 (28 oz can) crushed tomatoes

1 (14 oz can) stewed tomatoes, broken up with your fingers

1 (6 oz can) tomato paste

2 bay leaves

Garlic and onion powder (my grandmother would put it in so that it looks like she’d dusted the top of the sauce with it)

2 tsp. salt

1 tbsp. Italian seasonings

1/2 tsp. dried red crushed pepper or fresh Pimento Moida

A pinch of sugar to round out the flavors (lots of acidity from the tomatoes)

In a large skillet or Dutch oven, saute the onion, green pepper in olive oil until softened. Add garlic and cook a minute more. Add remaining ingredients and let simmer on low. Add the meatballs and let simmer for one hour making sure the sauce and meatballs do not burn on the bottom of the pan.

1 lb. spaghetti

1 tsp. olive oil

½ tsp. kosher salt

Fill a large Dutch oven with water, oil and salt. When it comes to a boil, place spaghetti and let cook for about 7-8 minutes or follow directions on the box. Less time is needed for fresh pasta.

Serve meatballs and sauce over spaghetti and enjoy!