Caveman’s Cheesy Meatballs

Caveman's Cheesy Meatballs

As I wrote last week, I was lucky enough to be sent a truckle of Wookey Hole Cave-Aged Cheddar to try and, although we have been gobbling it non-stop throughout the festive period and beyond, it stands undefeated. I swear it grows back overnight. So, I thought I’d use some of it to cook up something suitably troglodyte-friendly. I pondered about what cave-people would eat (probably not mature cheese, to be fair) and the basic principle I came up with was: MEAT.

So, here is a recipe for some good old winter comfort food: meatballs with an oozing cheesy middle, in a tomato sauce.

Wookey Hole Cave-Aged Cheddar

Ingredients

500g mince, beef or a mixture of beef and pork (or woolly mammoth and prehistoric Irish elk if you’re going all-out for authenticity)

1tsp each of rosemary and sage, finely chopped

2 handfuls of breadcrumbs

Nutmeg

Salt and pepper

1 egg, beaten

Cheddar cheese, chopped into little chunks

 

1 onion

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

1 x 400g tin of chopped tomatoes

1 x 400g tin of cherry tomatoes

Splash of balsamic vinegar and red wine

Olive oil

Parsley to garnish

 

To make the meatballs, mix together the mince, herbs, breadcrumbs, a grating or two of nutmeg and seasoning. Add the beaten egg and combine – the best way is the get your hands in there and squidge it all up. Form the mixture into meatballs about the size of a ping-pong ball; you should end up with about 16.

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Make a hole in the middle of each meatball, push a cheesy chunk inside and reseal the meatball, ensuring the outside is smooth with no sign of cheese poking through. Chill in the fridge until needed.

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Meanwhile, chop the onion up and fry it in some olive oil with the crushed garlic cloves until soft. Add all of the tinned tomatoes and a splash of balsamic vinegar and red wine. Add a tinful of water and then mash the cherry tomatoes up with the back of a wooden spoon (don’t do it against the side of the pan unless you want an eyeful of exploding tomatoes). Leave to simmer for about 20 minutes.

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To fry the meatballs, heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a frying pan and add the meatballs (you may have to do it in batches depending on the size of your pan). Brown them on all sides.

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A lot of fat will probably come out of the balls and so gently transfer them to another pan, pour over the sauce and put a lid on the pan. Leave the balls to simmer for about 20 minutes until they are cooked through.

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Some of the cheese will probably ooze out but if you leave them alone, it will just set around the meatballs. Serve hot with spaghetti.

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16 Comments

Filed under Cheese Recipes

16 responses to “Caveman’s Cheesy Meatballs

  1. Great idea! My son would love these – he will NEVER be a vegetarian though he does enjoy his veggies as long as they aren’t turnips or mushrooms. I do something similar with leftover risotto and mozzarella – a recipe I have been meaning to post ever since I started the blog! x

  2. That sounds like the sort of recipe your kids will still be asking for when they’re in their 20s and bringing their washing home from uni! “What do you want for supper, son?” “Can we have the Cavemens’ Meatballs again? Oh go on, mum, pleeease….”

  3. This looks awesome and my husband would go crazy for this!

  4. Love the idea of stuffing cheese in the middle. Coincidentally, a large number of Mammoth fossils were unearthed in Snowmass just up the road from me. Ancient bone broth perhaps? 😉

  5. Yum, yum. I love spaghetti and meatballs . . . and with the cheese inside rather than on the top . . . delicious!

  6. I’m by no means a cheese expert but I do adore Wookey Hole, I have to ask the cheese man to suggest something different as I would buy it every week!

  7. Lucy from Life and Cheese

    These look great- burger patties can be made in a similar way stuffed with cheese. They’re called juicy Lucy’s in the US!

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