Albóndigas with Olives
For the meatballs:
- 1/2 lb ground pork
- 1/2 lb ground turkey breast
- 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro
- 1/2 cup grated Manchego or parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup grated yellow onion
- 5 oz finely chopped Spanish manzanilla olives
- 4 cloves grated or minced garlic
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoonWorcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
For the sauce:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- 1/3 cup finely chopped yellow onion
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 cup beef broth
- 1 teaspoon saffron
- 32 oz diced tomatoes
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- kosher salt, to taste
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 5 oz Spanish manzanilla olives
Make the meatballs:
- Preheat the oven to 425°F with a rack in the center of the oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment, foil or a silicone mat.
- In a large bowl, mix together the pork, turkey, breadcrumbs, cilantro, cheese, onion, olives, garlic, egg, oregano, cumin, coriander, smoked paprika, Worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper and 1 tablespoon of olive oil until well combined.
- Using a cookie scoop or small ice cream scoop, divide the mixture into even sized meatball portions about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. You should have about 22 meatballs.
- Coat your hands with remaining olive oil and roll the balls until smooth and place on baking sheet.
- Bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
Make the tomato sauce:
- While the meatballs bake, heat the oil in a large pot or dutch oven over medium heat.
- Add the onion, garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until the garlic is just beginning to turn golden brown.
- Add the beef broth and saffron and bring to a boil.
- Add the tomatoes, bay leaf, sugar, and season with salt and pepper. Using a heavy spoon, mash the tomatoes as the sauce begins to bubble. If you have an immersion blender, this would be a good time to blend the sauce to your desired consistency, just be careful not to blend the bay leaf.
- Lower heat and let the sauce simmer partially covered.
- When the meatballs are done, add them to the sauce, along with the olives, and let it cook for about 5 minutes more.
- Drizzle the albondigas with a touch more olive oil and serve immediately with warm bread.