Italian sausage polpettina & macaroni bake

Italian sausage polpettina & macaroni bake

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(10 ratings)

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Cooking time

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 1 hr, 20 mins

Skill level

Easy

Servings

Serves 8

This big dish is guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser - you can never make too much of this kind of food

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Freezable
Nutrition info

Nutrition

kcalories
881
protein
40g
carbs
77g
fat
47g
saturates
16g
fibre
4g
sugar
13g
salt
1.75g

Ingredients

  • 150ml olive oil
  • 2 large onions, finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 100g fresh breadcrumbs
  • 50ml milk
  • 500g quality beef mince
  • 500g Italian sausages (about 8), meat squeezed from the skins
  • good handful chopped parsley
  • 200ml red wine
  • 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
  • 500g pack macaroni

For the white sauce

  • 50g butter
  • 50g plain flour
  • 600ml milk
  • 100g grated tasty cheese, such as mature cheddar or Gruyere

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Method

  1. Make the white sauce. Melt the butter in a medium pan, then stir in the flour. Keeping the heat high, whisk in the milk and bring to the boil, whisking until smooth and thickened. Season with a good pinch of salt and some pepper, then stir in most of the grated cheese and set aside, with the surface covered with cling film to stop if forming a skin.
  2. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-based casserole or frying pan, then add the onions and garlic and a real good grind of black pepper and salt. Cook slowly and gently until the onions are soft but not coloured. Take half the mix out and mix with the breadcrumbs and milk in a large bowl. Using a slotted spoon, lift the rest of the onions out of the pan, leaving the oil behind, and set aside.
  3. Mix the mince and sausagemeat, chopped parsley and lots of salt and pepper into the breadcrumbs. Mix really well with your hands until the whole thing becomes pasty rather than lumpy. Shape into the size of ping-pong balls, then heat the pan again and brown the Simply serve with a fresh green salad balls in batches in the leftover onion oil. Remove the final batch, then return the reserved onions to the pan with the wine. Bubble over a high heat, scraping the bottom of the pan, then stir in the tomatoes and meatballs. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5 mins. Can be made up to 2 days ahead or frozen.
  4. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6 and boil the macaroni according to pack instructions. Drain well, then mix with the meatball sauce. Tip into the largest ovenproof dish you have. Top with the white sauce (warm it a bit if it is slightly solid), then scatter with the remaining cheese. Bake for 35-40 mins until bubbling and golden.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, September 2009

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Comments

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knoctor's picture

I just love this recipe but I make the meat balls and just put them in then oven on a baking tray. My teenage boys love me to make it when they have their friends over- and it all gets eaten up then.

breakfast1's picture
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Was such a faff to make. The meatballs were delicious, and I will make those again, but just use a tomato sauce and serve with spaghetti. But I won't make this dish again.

bacon-n-egg's picture
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Not really a dinner party dish, I felt as though the componants didnt gel. The recipe didnt stipulate depth of dish as I used a large dish and the sauce didnt cover enough. I would use a cheese topping with egg so that its more spongy and deeper. The meat balls were easy and I made this dish quiet speedily.
The children loved it and in particular the baby!!!
Cant see me making this again really I would chop up a pack of quality sauages and mix with tom sauce.

thecherub's picture
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I loved this. Was a bit fiddly to make and took quite a while but I was happy to spend a sunday doing this. The result is definately worth it. Didnt add extra herbs, cayenne pepper or chilli flakes but might do that next time just for a change - nothing wrong with it as it is though. The meatballs were beautiful!

weemee's picture
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I am the odd one out. Really felt it was a waste of my lovely butchers italian sausages! Not good at all. better off witht he sausage and fennel recipes.

autocuejim's picture
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This was a real fantastic dish and we had some leftover from dinner so warmed it up for lunch the next day and the taste was even better.

Well done John

nanbell's picture
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Fantastic recipe for families. I made this for friends visiting from France and the children really enjoyed it.

juliaslater's picture
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This recipe is amazing the meatballs are so soft and tasty a winner every time I make it. I did add another tin of tomatoes last time I made it as it did not really have a lot of sauce and I prefer it with a bit more!

janefacey's picture

Great recipe - served for supper for friends last night. Couldn't get Italian sausages so used premium Cumberland and added lots of oregano. Made meatballs and tomato sauce day before and finished dish the morning of the supper, kept in fridge until needed.

alex-f's picture

Fantastic – I served it as a family meal but would also make for an informal dinner party. Not sure about the stated prep time though – I would love to see John Torode prep this in half an hour!

lizzafezza's picture
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Delicious. I added more herbs and a pinch of chilli flakes to the meatball mix. Will definatly make again.

hhfood's picture

Great recipe. Made this for a group of friends who now want the recipe! Best meatballs I've ever had. I put 1/2 tsp cayenne in the meatball mixture to give a bit of bite!

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