SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS

SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
Jump to Recipe – – – – – Print Recipe
SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS

A little bit of homemade spaghetti and meatballs

I honestly surprised myself with how quick and easily these spaghetti and meatballs came together! It took about half an hour and was such a comforting and tasty dish. I’m not the biggest pasta eater (and I say eater because I definitely am a fan) because pasta = lots of carbs. Now, don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love carbs, but the issue is I love them TOO much. I eat a lot of bread so that’s why I usually stay away from pasta. But, every once and a while I switch things up and soak in all the carbs with a beautiful pasta dish.

Spaghetti and Meatballs

I’ve posted a meatball recipe before, but trust me, these are even easier to make!

Learning from the best…

Throughout my travels and life experiences, I’ve definitely learned that the beauty of Italians cuisine and a delicious pasta in particular is simplicity. Being able to highlight the few ingredients used is so much more powerful than dumping a bunch of flavours together. This spaghetti and meatball dish was definitely inspired with that thought of keeping it simple. I hope you love how easy and delicious this recipe really is!

Spaghetti and Meatballs

Spaghetti and Meatballs

Keeping it simple and classic, this spaghetti and meatballs recipe uses few ingredients but is a punch of comfort and flavour.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 people

Equipment

  • Large pan
  • Medium bowl
  • Medium pot
  • Baking sheet

Ingredients
  

Meatballs

  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • ½ tsp oregano dried
  • 1 tbsp Parmesan cheese grated
  • 1 medium egg beaten

Sauce

  • 720 ml tomato sauce I used Divella Strained Tomato Sauce
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 12 cherry tomatoes quartered
  • ½ tsp oregano dried
  • salt & pepper to taste

Other

  • ½ box spaghetti noodles cooked as per box instructions or until al dente
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

Instructions
 

  • In a medium pot, cook spaghetti noodles in salted water according to the instructions or until al dente. Set aside once done.
  • In a medium bowl, combine all the meatball ingredients and form about golf ball sized meatballs.
  • Preheat the oven to 375°F. In a large pan, over medium-high heat, add 1½ tbsp of olive oil and wait til hot. Lightly brown the meatballs on each side, approximately 2 minutes each side. Once lightly browned, place the meatballs on baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.
  • In the meantime, using the same pan, add the remaining olive oil and turn heat down to medium. Sauté the garlic and cherry tomatoes for 5 minutes. Then, season with salt, pepper and oregano. Next, add the tomato sauce and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the meatballs and pasta to the pan and mix until well combined. Serve with some Parmesan cheese and enjoy!

Notes

Did you make this recipe? Tag @forkandflora on Instagram!
Keyword italian, meatballs, spaghetti, spaghetti and meatballs


Lasagna

LASAGNA

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Jump to Recipe – – – – – Print Recipe
Lasagna

My all time favourite food… LASAGNA!

MMMMM. I could literally eat lasagna everyday for the rest of my life. It’s by far my favourite food, so much so that I even had the nickname Garfield once. The options are endless in terms of the flavour profile you choose to go for, so I’m sure this won’t be my one and only lasagna recipe.

A couple years ago, my partner and I went on a trip to France and Italy. It was my mission to find the best lasagna. I wasn’t planning on getting it in France, but one random evening, in a random restaurant I placed my order. It was the BEST of the trip. I still remember it to this day. And that beats out each of the 4-5 lasagnas I tried while we were in Italy.

It’s all about the layers…

I love all lasagna, especially my mom’s. She used to always make it for me when I’d come home after weeks or months away. While this recipe is pretty close to my mom’s, I have made a few changes.

Want to try some other Italian recipes?

Chicken Parmesan

Bocconcini Salad

Spaghetti and Meatballs

Lasagna

Lasagna

Lasagna noodles layered with ground beef with veggies, mozzarella, ricotta cheese and baked to perfection.
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian

Equipment

  • 12 x 16 inch pan
  • Large pan

Ingredients
  

  • 450 g lasagna noodles cooked as per packet instructions
  • 1 medium yellow onion chopped
  • 1 medium red bell pepper diced
  • 100 g white mushrooms chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 small zucchini chopped
  • 375 g ground beef extra lean
  • 2 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 650 ml Primo sauce I used thick and zesty herb and garlic
  • 454 g ricotta
  • 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese
  • cup mozzarella grate
  • salt & pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • Cook lasagna noodles in salted water until al dente, as per packet instructions. Set aside once done.
  • In a large pan, on medium-high heat, add olive oil. Wait til hot and sauté onion for 2 minutes. Next, add garlic, salt and pepper and continue to sauté for 1 minute. Add in the ground beef and Italian seasoning and cook for approximately 8 minutes or until beef has browned.
  • Once browned, turn down to medium-low heat. Add chopped red pepper and zucchini and cook for 2 minutes. Next, add mushrooms, salt and pepper and cook for an additional 2 minutes.
  • Turn down to low heat, add the Primo sauce and parmesan cheese. Simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Now it’s time to assemble your lasagna. Preheat your oven to 375°F. Start with some sauce on the bottom of your pan, then lasagna noodles, mozzarella, beef, ricotta, noodles, repeat. There will be 3 layers of noodles. On top of the last layer, top with sauce and mozzarella. Cover with tin foil and bake for 25 minutes.
  • Rest for 10-15 minutes and serve!

Notes

Did you make this recipe? Tag @forkandflora on Instagram!
Keyword lasagna

SHRIMP PASTA

SHRIMP PASTA

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Jump to Recipe – – – – – Print Recipe
SHRIMP PASTA

This shrimp pasta. WOW. It is by far the most delicious pasta I have ever made and the only pasta that beats it is from Florence, Italy. It’s super simple, but what makes it is my fresh lobster stock. Without it you’ll have an average shrimp pasta so please don’t skip the most important step!

Fresh seafood pasta…

Seafood pasta, with fresh seafood, is probably one of my favourite meals. The simplicity behind it really lets the ingredients shine and allows you to enjoy each component separately and together as a whole.

Shrimp Pasta

So quick and easy to make!

If you already have your lobster stock ready, this quick pasta is sure to blow your taste buds away. The secret to the most flavourful pasta dish is to boil your pasta in the lobster stock, and then used that reduced “pasta water” aka lobster stock in your pasta sauce too.

Shrimp Pasta

Variations:

This pasta is most definitely not limited to shrimp as your seafood of choice. I would have preferred to use lobster, but we had already eaten it all before I made the stock. Next time I’ll definitely put some lobster meat aside for this recipe. You can substitute the shrimp for pretty much any seafood you like but I’d suggest sticking to shrimp, lobster, or mussels.

In terms of the pasta itself, I used a spaghetti noodle, but a linguine or angel hair pasta would suit this dish as well.

If you don’t have your own lobster stock, I’d recommend using a store bought fish stock and maybe add a bit of clam juice to it too. It won’t be nearly as good, but it’s an easier option and will still result in a tasty dish.

Shrimp Pasta

Shrimp Pasta

An absolutely delicious shrimp pasta made in a fresh lobster stock.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 people

Equipment

  • Medium pot
  • Large saucepan

Ingredients
  

  • 4 cups fresh lobster stock (recipe on the blog)
  • ½ lb shrimp
  • 2 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes halved
  • ½ tsp chili flakes
  • 1 tsp parsley fresh or dried
  • 1 tbsp fresh basil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ package spaghetti noddles

Instructions
 

  • In a medium pot, bring 4 cups of lobster stock to a boil (recipe on the blog). Add the pasta and cook as per the instructions on the package or until al dente. Once cooked, drain the pasta but be sure to set aside the reduced lobster stock aka “pasta water”.
  • In the meantime, put the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Once heated up, add the shrimp and cook on each side for 2 minutes (timing may vary depending on the size of your shrimp). When your shrimp is flipped after 2 minutes for the first time, add the garlic, parsley, chili flakes, salt and pepper. Once the shrimp are cooked, remove from the pan and set aside.
  • Turn heat down to medium-low and add the halved cherry tomatoes and ½ cup of the reduced lobster stock. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until tomatoes start to soften. Add the shrimp, basil and cooked pasta to the pan and mix until well combined. Your pasta is now ready to serve!

Notes

Did you make this recipe? Tag @forkandflora on Instagram!
Keyword cold pasta salad, italian, lobster stock, seafood pasta, shrimp pasta

CHICKEN PARMESAN

CHICKEN PARMESAN

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Jump to Recipe – – – – – Print Recipe
CHICKEN PARMESAN

Coming back to our Italian themed dinner last week, I wanted to share my super easy and flavourful chicken parmesan recipe. This is such a comforting recipe that was the perfect accompaniment to my fresh bocconcini salad and Inspired Taste’s focaccia recipe.

chicken parmesan

How to make it:

First and foremost, it’s important to beat your chicken breasts down into cutlets. I enjoy a thin chicken parmesan cutlet so I slice them in half lengthwise first and then lightly beat the halves until they reach my preferred thickness, about 1 inch.

Next, you want to season the chicken. You can absolutely change the spices based on your preference, but this recipe gives you a traditional flavour. Coat the cutlets in flour, then egg wash and finally in panko.

It’s important to then fry your cutlets in oil first, before assembling them and finishing them off in the oven.

Alternative ingredients…

  • No panko? No problem. Panko is easily substituted for bread crumbs, but I find that panko results in a crispier chicken cutlet.
  • Mozzarella definitely isn’t your only option! You can use parmesan alone or use a different white cheese like provolone.
  • In terms of the pasta/tomato sauce, you can used anything you have in your pantry! I used a Compliment’s pasta sauce, but you can even used a plain tomato sauce if that’s all your have on hand.
Chicken Parmesan

Chicken Parmesan

A classic Italian chicken cutlet baked with tomato sauce and parmesan cheese.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 people

Equipment

  • Large pan
  • Baking sheet
  • 3 small bowls

Ingredients
  

  • 2 full chicken breasts cut in half lengthwise and beaten to a 1 inch thickness
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp pepper
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp herbs de provence
  • 1-2 eggs beaten
  • ½ cup panko
  • ½ cup flour
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • ¾ cup pasta sauce I used Compliment’s Roasted Onion & Garlic Pasta Sauce.
  • 1 cup mozzarella grated
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese

Instructions
 

  • Cut the 2 chicken breasts in half lengthwise and then beat each half until chicken is about 1 inch thick. Season each cutlet with ½ tsp salt, ½ tsp pepper, ½ tsp garlic powder and ½ tsp herbs de provence.
  • In 3 small bowls, put the flour, egg and panko in individual bowls. Coat the seasoned chicken cutlets in the flour, then the egg wash, and lastly the panko until fully covered.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large pan, put oil on medium-high heat. When oil is hot, fry the chicken cutlets for 4 minutes on each side.
  • Once fried, place the cutlets on a baking sheet. Put 1/4 cup of the mozzarella on each cutlet. Then cover the mozzarella with 2-3 tbsp of pasta sauce per cutlet. Finally, sprinkle 2 tbsp of parmesan cheese on each cutlet.
  • Bake the assembled chicken cutlets for 10 minutes.
  • Let cool for 2 minutes and they’re ready to serve!

Notes

Did you make this recipe? Tag @forkandflora on Instagram!
Keyword chicken cutlet, chicken parmesan, italian

BOCCONCINI SALAD

BOCCONCINI SALAD

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Jump to Recipe – – – – – Print Recipe

A super simple and fresh salad…

After my latest Flora Friday post featuring basil, I just had to use the fragrant culinary herb in my next meal. This bocconcini salad highlights basil perfectly because its flavour enhances and brings the entire dish to life. This salad is super fresh and so quick and easy that it’ll only take you a few minutes to throw together. Paired perfectly with Italian cuisine, last night’s Italian themed dinner featured this delightful salad making it the perfect accompaniment to our chicken parm and inspired taste’s focaccia bread.

Bocconcini Salad

It’s all about quality…

Any recipe with few ingredients requires the best quality ingredients. There’s no where to hide with this bocconcini salad so I definitely recommend using top quality ingredients. Fresh basil from the garden brings a fragrant freshness to the salad. While perfectly ripe cherry tomatoes ensures you have a nice crisp bite each mouthful. Lastly, dressing your bocconcini salad with a high quality olive oil and salt will provide a noticeably tastier difference.

Tips and tricks

  • Cut your cherry tomatoes in half lengthwise as well as the bocconcini cheese. I find the smaller bites allow for better flavour distribution and the tomato juice adds to the dressing.
  • When chopping your basil, stack your washed basil leaves on top of one another. Then roll the stacked leaves and proceed to chop, which will result in uniformly thin stripes of basil.
Bocconcini Salad

Bocconcini Salad

A simple, fresh and fragrant salad.
Prep Time 5 mins
Course Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4

Equipment

  • Small bowl

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes rinsed and halved lengthwise
  • 100 g bocconcini halved
  • ¼ cup fresh basil chopped
  • ½ tsp salt to taste
  • ½ tsp pepper to taste
  • 1 ½ tbsp olive oil extra virgin

Instructions
 

  • Rinse the cherry tomatoes and cut into halves.
  • Cut the bocconcini cheese into halves.
  • Chop the fresh basil into uniform thin stripes.
  • Combine the tomatoes, bocconcini, fresh basil, salt, pepper and olive oil into a service bowl and mix until the salad is fully dressed.

Notes

Did you make this recipe? Tag @forkandflora on Instagram!
Keyword basil, bocconcini, Bocconcini Salad, cold pasta salad, italian, tomato