Sinfully Delicious Meatball Sliders

“A delicate meatball slider full of rustic Italian flavor and savory notes that pairs well with the versatility of the iconic Sin Zin. The rich combination of spices in the slider compliment the dark fruit and pepper notes of the Sin Zin”

– Pennie Haase, AVV Nat’l Marketing Director, Northeast Regional Sales Manager

Meatballs:
1 Tbsp. olive oil
8 oz. ground pork
6 oz, 80% lean ground beef
8 oz. ground veal
½ cup whole-milk ricotta
2 large eggs, beaten
2 Tbsp. fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
2 tsp. dry oregano
½ tsp. fennel seed, freshly ground
1 tsp. fresh thyme, chopped
3 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped
1/8 tsp. red pepper flakes crushed
¼ cup parmesan cheese, grated
1 cup fresh white breadcrumbs, coarsely chopped
salt & pepper to taste

Sliders:
16 slider buns
olive oil
8 oz. arugula
1 to 2 cups Parmesan cheese, grated
½ cup parsley, chopped

Sauce:
1/3 cup olive oil
1 ½ cups yellow onion, chopped
3 medium garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp. dry oregano
½ tsp. fresh thyme, chopped
1 bay leaf
1 Tbsp. tomato paste
½ cup AVV Sin Zin
2— 26oz. Canned tomatoes, chopped (no salt added)
1 tsp. kosher salt
¼ tsp. fresh ground black pepper

-Serves 8-

Method of Preparation:

Sauce: Heat the olive oil in a heavy-duty 4-quart saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, Cook, stirring often, until the onion is soft, 6 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic, oregano, thyme and bay leaf. Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring constantly, until darkened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the wine, reduce until absorbed. Add the tomatoes with juice, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and then simmer over low heat, stirring frequently, until the sauce has reduced by about a third, 40 to 60 minutes. Remove the bay leaf. Keep warm, covered. Add salt to taste.

Meatballs: Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 450°F. Coat the bottom and sides of an 18-inch baking dish with the olive oil. Set aside. Combine the ground meats, breadcrumbs, ricotta, eggs, parsley, oregano, fennel seed, thyme, garlic, red pepper flakes, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Mix gently but thoroughly with your hands.
Divide the meat into 16 small 2 3/4” diameter) portions; roll with wet hands to make them round, then slightly flatten. Don’t make them patty like, just flatten enough so they aren’t perfectly round. Arrange the balls snugly in oiled baking dish. Bake the meatballs until they register about 90°F on an instant-read thermometer and are firm to the touch, 10 to 12 minutes. (If you’ve made the tomato sauce ahead of time, heat it while the meatballs are cooking.) Remove the meatballs from the oven and drain excess fat from the pan. Ladle sauce over them to completely cover, cover with foil, return them to the oven, and continue to bake until an instant-read thermometer inserted into one reads 165°F, about 35 minutes.

Sliders: Place slider buns on baking sheet and lightly drizzle with olive oil. Heat oven to 350°F and toast buns until golden brown, approximately 5 minutes. To assemble the sliders, place arugula leaves on bottom of each roll, top with meatball, drizzle with sauce and sprinkle with a little Parmesan cheese and chopped parsley.

Enjoy with a bottle of 2015 Sin Zin.