Manchego is a hard Spanish cheese that adds a nice nuttiness to the meat mix. We used a blend of beef, pork, and veal for a perfect balance of flavor and fat. Starting on the stove and finishing in the oven in a stew of tomatoes and oregano keeps in flavor and moisture. Crusty bread, anyone? Cook, relax, and enjoy!
What you'll need:
¼ oz fresh oregano
4 oz Manchego cheese
1½ lbs meatloaf mix
½ cup panko breadcrumbs
14 oz can chopped tomatoes
2 ciabatta rolls
3 oz baby arugula
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 large egg
freshly ground black pepper
large ovenproof skillet
rimmed baking sheet
1. Prepare ingredients
Preheat oven to 425°F. Remove oregano leaves from stems and finely chop leaves. Crumble (or grate) manchego cheese into small pieces.
Add ground meat, panko, 1 beaten egg, oregano, and ½ of the manchego to a large bowl. Season with 1¼ teaspoon salt and a few grinds of pepper and mix to combine. Shape mixture into 16 balls.
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high. Cook meatballs, turning occasionally, until browned all over, 5–7 minutes.
Make sauce and bake
Add tomatoes to skillet and bring to a boil; season with salt and pepper. Transfer skillet to oven and bake until meatballs are cooked through, 15–20 minutes. Remove from oven and scatter remaining manchego over top.
Meanwhile, split rolls in half through the middle. Drizzle with oil and season with salt and pepper. Place on a rimmed baking sheet, facing up, and toast along with the meatballs until bread is golden, about 10 minutes.
Toss arugula with vinegar and 1 tablespoon oil in a large bowl; season with salt and pepper. Serve alongside meatballs and crusty bread. Enjoy!
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