Saturday, March 17, 2012

Beef Meatball Bourguignon and a Giveaway

Times up! My Skinner Pasta giveaway is now closed.

Congratulations to Jennifer for winning the Skinner 100th Anniversary Skinner Pasta Mealtime Memories Kit valued at $50.00. (Two boxes of Skinner Pasta, one colander, one set of Texas-themed serving utensils, and two Skinner Pasta recipe cards.)

Original Post

This is not a picture of your mama's spaghetti and meatballs. This dish is a play on the classic French flavors of Beef Borguignon, but saves you the time of simmering chunks of tough meat for a long period of time. Make this meatball version, the sauce, more like a gravy, clings to the egg noodles and rounds out this perfect evening meal.

Skinner Pasta, part of the New World Pasta Company family of brands, is celebrating 100 years of consistent quality. Because of this milestone anniversary, Skinner has sent me this cool Pasta Package that includes a very nice footed red colander, two serving tongs and samples of Skinner pasta for my review.  Do you like? You too can win your own Pasta Package from Skinner, keep reading for contest rules. Also, find out how to enter the Skinner Pasta 100 Years of Mealtime Memories Essay Contest... you could win $10,000. (That's not a typo.)

When Jim asked for spaghetti and meatballs, I'm sure he imagined something completely different. Because I was excited to incorporate the 100th anniversary Skinner Pasta into a meal, I knew that a run of the mill meatball just wouldn't cut it. Hold on to your seats folks, this is one cool recipe that will slap you in the face with flavor. I would bet money that this could easily become a mealtime favorite at your house.

The ingredient list for the Meatballs:
3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs
1/4 cup whole milk
1 1/2 pounds ground round (85 percent lean)
2 large eggs, beaten
3 tablespoons finely chopped shallots
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

The ingredient list for the Bourguignon sauce:
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
4 ounces pancetta, coarsely chopped
10 ounces cremini mushrooms, small dice
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium carrot, thinly sliced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups beef stock
1 cup hearty red wine, such as Shiraz
2 tablespoons brandy
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish

To make fresh breadcrumbs, I trimmed the crust off of five pieces of whole wheat bread and then cut into quarters.

Using a cuisinart, I processed the fresh bread until it was a fine crumble.

So simple, yet it makes all the difference in the world in the texture of the meatballs.

The fresh breadcrumbs are super fine and fluffy.

Next, sprinkle 1/4 cup of milk over the fresh breadcrumbs and allow this to sit for about three minutes to soften.

Beat two eggs.

Finely chop a large shallot, enough for 3 tablespoons.

Finely chop flat leaf parsley, enough for 2 tablespoons.

Mix 1.5 pounds ground beef with the two beaten eggs, the finely chopped shallot, chopped parsley, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper.

Once mixed, put this in the fridge and let it rest for at least 15 minutes or up to 4 hours.

After the meat rests in the fridge, you roll it into 18 balls. Jim helped me with this step. Just wet your hands and start portioning.

Place just enough vegetable oil in your pan to coat the bottom. If you are cooking all the meatballs and have a large roasting pan, use that. I would have sworn up and down that I had a roasting pan but I couldn't find it, so I just baked a few in my dutch oven. The remaining were flash frozen in the freezer and then put in a zip top bag for another meal. Meatballs freeze extremely well!

Bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes until lightly browned. Remove to a plate.

Drain off most of the grease in the bottom of your pan, then return to the stove top and turn the heat up to medium-high. Add 1/2 cup water and scrape up all the brown bits stuck to the bottom of your pan. Once the water is boiling, and it doesn't take long, turn the heat off and set this aside. We will add it to our sauce in a later step.

The sauce for these meatballs turned out so good, it's more like a complex gravy than a "sauce" and it begins with an ingredient that Jim and I hardly every eat. I diced these mushrooms very small so that the texture wouldn't bother us too much. If the texture of mushrooms doesn't bother anyone in your family, you could simply quarter these.

I'm going to finish all my prep work for the sauce before I start cooking. Next, I give another shallot a small dice, enough for 1/4 cup.

The carrot can be sliced or diced any way you like. I used our mandolin to thinly slice this carrot.

In a large sauce pan, heat a very little bit of vegetable oil over medium heat and then add the diced pancetta and cook, stirring occasionally, until the pancetta is browned, about 10 minutes.

Once cooked, use a slotted spoon to transfer the pancetta to a paper towel to drain.

Increase the heat to medium-high and add the mushrooms to the fat in the saucepan and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 7 minutes.

In recipes like this, I don't mind using mushrooms as long as it's a small dice. When they cook down, they become so small that you can't recognize the texture.

After the mushrooms brown, add the chopped shallot.

Cook this until the shallot is softened.

Next, add the butter and let it melt and bubble.

Toss in the sliced carrots.

Measure 1/4 cup flour and sprinkle over the top and then stir well. I seriously love my pantry labels!

Next, we deglaze the pan and add all of our liquid. Jim made our wine selection for the night and he chose this Shiraz from Williamson Wines. We became fans of this wine while visiting Healdsburge, CA with friends. Any hearty red wine would work in this recipe, just make sure you taste it first. Only cook with wine you would actually drink.

For the beef broth, I thought I would give this new product a try. It's like a beef bouillon, but in concentrated liquid form. It was super easy to use and I thought it tasted great in this recipe.

Also, add the drippings from the pan you roasted the meatballs in.

Add 2 tablespoons of brandy.

Add thyme.

Add the tomato paste and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until lightly thickened, about 10 minutes.

Return the meatballs and the pancetta to the skillet and cover with the lid ajar. Cook until the carrot is tender, about 15 minutes.

Skinner Pasta has been a favorite family staple throughout the southeastern United States, namely in Texas and Oklahoma since 1911. Jim has always been partial to Egg Noodles, I enjoy this delicious white pasta in a variety of cuts. Varieties include Spaghetti, Thin Spaghetti, Elbows, Vermicelli, Lasagna, Twirls, Shells, Angel Hair, Egg Fettucine, Dumplings, Penne Rigate, Bor Ties, Linguine, Rigatoni, Fideo Mediano, Trio Ialiano, Manicotti, Sea Shells.... wheeeew, that's a lot of pasta!

You could choose among boiled new potatoes, egg noodles, or even polenta as a side dish for this ragout. Since I was making this for Jim, I knew he would absolutely love if used the Skinner Egg Noodles for this dish...have I mentioned how much he loves Egg Noodles? I'm encouraging Jim to enter the Skinner 100 Years of Mealtime Memories Essay Contest. I'm already making plans with the $10,000 we could win.

Isn't this the absolute cutest footed colander?
My dear husband could literally eat these Egg Noodles right out of the colander.

Serve the simmering meatballs and gravy over the egg noodles for a complete meal in a bowl.  

Serve with grated parmesan cheese over the top along with fresh parsley.

Both Jim and I flipped over the texture of the meatballs and the thick and hearty gravy spooned over the egg noodles. Serving the same wine that was used in the sauce, just sent this meal over the top.

View the original recipe on Epicurious. Now for the fun part! Thanks to Skinner Pasta, I'm able to select a lucky HWM reader to receive a 100th Anniversary Skinner Pasta Mealtime Memories Kit valued at $50.00. (Two boxes of Skinner Pasta, one colander, one set of Texas-themed serving utensils, and two Skinner Pasta recipe cards.)

How to Enter:
  • Comment - share your favorite mealtime memory or a favorite dish including Skinner Pasta in the comment section below.
  • Tweet - "I just entered to win a #Skinner100 giveaway on @homewithmandy thanks to @SkinnerPasta" Be sure ot leave me another comment (for second entry) after you tweet about the contest.
My contest will close on Wednesday, March 21st at midnight and I will select a winner using a random number generator. Best of luck to everyone!

From March 1 through May 14, Skinner Pasta is inviting families like yours to share an original story of a favorite mealtime memory with Skinner Pasta in 250 words or less. One grand prize winning essay will be awarded a grand prize of $10,000 and four runner-ups will receive $1,000. Visit Skinner Pasta's Facebook Page for more information about the contest.


  1. My daughter loves itbwhen we make chicken fettucini Alfredo together with the fettucini noodles by skinner! We have so much fun

  2. Thanks for visiting us and entering our contest and for inviting us to yours. Your recipe looks fantastic! I don't think we have Skinner pasta in NC, but sure would love to try it with my favorite pesto sauce and shredded Parm cheese! Delicious.

  3. One of my all time favorite meals is chicken fettuchini alfredo and I love Skinner pasta! Thanks for this giveaway Mandy!

  4. Thanks for visiting my blog...always love meeting fellow Texas bloggers! Your meatballs look WONDERFUL!! I would love to win this prize pack; my favorite thing to make with pasta is homemade bolognese or Giada's turkey meatballs with pancetta and sun-dried tomatoes.

  5. ...and I just tweeted about your giveaway!

  6. I LOVE old fashioned Mac and cheese!

  7. I LOVE old fashioned Mac and cheese!