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These Spanish-style meatballs are prepared with a quick béchamel, which makes them wonderfully moist and tender. They’re cooked in a deeply flavorful tomato-based sauce made with wine and brandy, then topped with crisp mushrooms. Slideshow: More Meatball Recipes 

September 2017


Credit: Christopher Testani

Recipe Summary test

1 hr 25 mins
3 hrs 40 mins




Instructions Checklist
  • Make the meatballs In a small saucepan, melt the butter. Add the flour; cook over moderate heat, whisking, until a thick paste forms, 1 minute. Gradually whisk in the milk and cook until thick, 2 to 3 minutes. Scrape into a large bowl and let cool slightly. Add the chuck, pork, eggs, parsley, wine, garlic, paprika, 2 teaspoons of salt and 1 teaspoon of pepper; mix well. Cover and refrigerate for about 2 hours.

  • Form the meat mixture into 1 1/2-inch balls. In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil. Dredge half the meatballs in flour. Cook over moderately high heat, turning, until browned all over, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and meatballs; don’t wipe out the pan.

  • Make the sauce Grate the tomato halves on the large holes of a box grater set in a bowl until only the skins remain; discard the skins.

  • Add the onion, carrot, garlic and a generous pinch of salt to the saucepan and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until just starting to brown, about 8 minutes. Add the tomatoes and paprika and simmer over moderate heat until slightly reduced, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the flour, then stir in the wine and brandy and simmer until barely thickened, 5 minutes. Transfer to a blender and puree until very smooth. Return to the saucepan, whisk in the stock and bring to a boil. Season with salt and pepper.

  • Add the meatballs to the sauce, cover and simmer over moderately low heat until cooked through, about 15 minutes. Uncover and simmer until the sauce is slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the parsley, cover and keep warm over very low heat.

  • Meanwhile, make the mushrooms In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil until shimmering. Add half the mushrooms; season with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until browned, 8 minutes. Transfer to a bowl. Repeat with the remaining oil and mushrooms.

  • Spoon the meatballs and sauce into bowls, top with the mushrooms and serve.

Make Ahead

The meatballs can be refrigerated in the sauce for up to 2 days. Reheat gently and stir in the parsley before serving.