Joanne Weir Follow @ChefJoanneWeir

Porchetta Meatballs

Porchetta Meatballs

Makes approx. 40 meatballs


5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small yellow onion, minced
2 pounds ground pork shoulder
2 large eggs
1 cup finely grated pecorino cheese
3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
1 ½ cups fresh breadcrumbs
1 cup milk
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
2 teaspoons fennel seed, coarsely ground
¼ teaspoon fennel pollen
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Oven Roasted Plum Tomato Dipping Sauce (recipe below)


Warm 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium frying pan over medium high Heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and translucent, about 7 minutes. Meanwhile, pour the milk over the bread crumbs in a bowl and let stand.

Place the onions in a large bowl and add the remaining ingredients including the soaked breadcrumbs, 2 ½ teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.

To test for seasoning, take a heaping tablespoon of the meatball mixture and make a patty. Warm a small frying pan over medium heat and fry the patty until done. Let cool slightly. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper as needed.

Form the mixture into 40 small walnut-size meatballs.

Warm the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large frying pan over medium high heat and cook the meatballs in a single layer with space in between until light golden, about 3 minutes. Turn the meatballs and continue to cook on the second side until light golden, another 3 minutes. Lower the heat and continue to cook, turning occasionally, until the meatballs are done, 10 to 15 minutes.  Serve on a platter with warm plum tomato dipping sauce on the side.



Olive oil for brushing
16 plum tomatoes, cored and halved, about 2 1/2 pounds
1/4 teaspoon fresh chopped rosemary
½ teaspoon fresh chopped oregano
1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small yellow onion, minced
¼ cup balsamic vinegar

Preheat an oven to 300°F.

Brush a baking sheet with olive oil and place the tomatoes, cut side up close together, on a baking sheet in a single layer. Sprinkle with rosemary, oregano and salt and let stand for 1 hour.
Place the tomatoes in the oven and cook until they have dried halfway but are still moist, 3 hours.

Note: These can be baked 3 to 4 days ahead of time to this point.

Warm 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, 7 minutes. Add the tomatoes and 1 cup water and cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes have fallen apart and the water has evaporated, 30 minutes. Add the balsamic and simmer for 5 more minutes. Pass the mixture through a food mill or puree in a blender or food processor until smooth. Place in a clean pan for reheating.  Serve warm.