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This recipe was originally called “Palle di Nonno” (in Italian Granpa’s nuts, as there is a joke about the # of nuts Granpa had; just Wiki it if you need to know more) and was eaten at LA SOL FA, a newly refurbished local (really round the corner from home) trattoria (typical old-fashioned, mama cooking, Roman restaurant) in via Germano Sommeiller 19,  Rome.

Here’s the recipe (serves 6):

  • 6 large Italian sausages
  • 450gr Ricotta cheese
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 150gr stale bread soaked in milk
  • 1 pkg streaky bacon (thawed)
  • 3 eggs (free range) US large
  • nutmeg
  • breadcrumbs (if needed)

Skin the sausages and place meat in a bowl; add the Ricotta cheese and the bread (rinsed); crack the eggs; add the lemon zest and a pinch of nutmeg. Mix (use your hands here) the ingredients well; at this stage you may need a handful of breadcrumbs in case the mixture is too wet and sticks to your fingers; please DO NOT use flour or the meatballs will become rock hard.

Still using your hands, form the meatballs (your aiming at three meatballs per serving, thus 18 meatballs) and lay them on a plate; once all meatballs are ready, wrap each one with a slice of bacon.

Transfer on a oven tray and leave in a hot oven (180’C) for about 20 minutes or until meat looks done (bacon will have turned crispy). Turn off the oven and leave the meatballs to rest at least 10 minutes.

Serve hot with a salad and or double potato mash.