I have always thought I should like meatballs. Unfortunately most did not grab me. Then I received a gift of ground veal. ( Yes I get some unusual gifts) The first thing that came to mind was meatballs. My first attempt was surprisingly good, so I kept playing with more ground veal.
I think the biggest secret is the bread. I use a pretty firm sourdough baguette, crust and all, cut into about 1/4 inch pieces. Smaller than a crouton but bigger than crumbs. Then I soak those in heavy cream. The other secret is to not over handle the meat mixture. I end up with a light but rich meatball.
I make my own basic marinara (use your favorite sauce) and I prefer them with a pasta like penne or rigatoni. I usually make big batches and freeze the excess.
1 cup firm bread cut into about 1/4 inch pieces
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 pound ground veal
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1 large shallot finely chopped
10 basil leaves finely chopped
Preheat oven to 375 degrees
1. In a bowl pour cream over bread. Let sit 1/2 hour, stirring occasionally.
2. In a large bowl crumble the veal then add all ingredients (including bread and cream) Mix with your hands until blended.
3. Form the mixture into balls a smidge more than 2 Tablespoons each. Do not pack, just form. You should end up with about 16.
4. Bake on a rimmed baking sheet for 20 minutes. When done loosen with a spatula to avoid sticking due to the cheese.
At this point the meatballs are fully cooked. I heat them in my marinara sauce and serve over pasta. They freeze well.