If you’re searching for the perfect meatball recipe, you’ve come to the right place: Chef Bruce Kalman of Union restaurant in Pasadena, Calif. is so passionate about cooking them he has an image of his grandmother’s meat grinder tattooed on his arm. In this episode of Let’s Get Fat, he shows Playboy senior editor Jeremy Repanich how to braise Italian pork meatballs in red sauce. The all-pork meatballs utilize the entire animal as much as possible, and Kalman recommends going to a butcher shop, getting some really good cuts, and grinding it yourself. His recipe includes guanciale, which is bacon made from the pig’s jowl, for added smokiness adds smokiness.
To work the meat as little as possible, Kalman first starts on the mix (eggs, ricotta cheese, roasted garlic puree, oregano, parsley, bread crumbs and parmigiano), before applying his gentle technique to form the balls. After cooking them at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes, he cools them down in the red sauce before putting them back in the oven. He plates two meatballs with caperberries , lardo, parmigiano-reggiano, olive oil and charred bread.