Meatballs in tomato sauce

Simon Rimmers pork meatballs are infused with aromatic cinnamon to evoke Moroccan flavours
By Simon Rimmer
Meatballs in tomato sauce
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time:
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Effort: easy


For the sauce

  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 sticks celery, finely chopped
  • 2 large cloves garlic
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 2 x 400 g cans chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 150 ml chicken stock
  • 100 ml red wine
  • freshly ground black pepper

For the meatballs

  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 450 g minced pork
  • 1 tbsp leaves of basil, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp coarsely ground black peppercorns

To serve

  • 250 g long grain rice, freshly boiled
  • 2 tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley


1. Heat the oil in a large pan and soften the chopped onion with the celery and garlic cloves.

2. Stir in the tomato purée and continue cooking for a minute before adding the tomatoes, cinnamon, stock, wine and seasoning to taste.

3. Simmer the sauce in an uncovered pan for about an hour, stirring occasionally. If you prefer a smooth sauce, blend it with a food processor or stick blender, or you can leave it as it is with a chunky texture.

4. Make the meatballs while the sauce is cooking, Heat three tablespoons of olive oil in a frying pan set over a medium heat and soften the onion with the garlic cloves for about 3-5 minutes. Leave to cool.

5. Mix the pork, with the cooled onion and garlic, and add the basil leaves, cinnamon and pepper. Work everything together and shape into 16-18 meatballs.

8. Heat the remaining one tablespoon of oil in a frying pan and cook the meatballs for 5-7 minutes, turning occasionally. Add to the tomato sauce.

8. Serve with a mound of boiled rice flecked with chopped parsley.

Rate This Recipe