Meatballs with Tomato and Bone Marrow Sauce

  • 4
  • 15 minutes
  • 35 minutes

Simple recipes like this are the key to a paleo lifestyle. We are not reinventing the wheel here; instead, we’re going back to a time when food was real and simple. If you can’t find any beef liver, lamb liver will work just as well.

Course: Main
Recipe contains:

  • 100 g beef liver 100 g beef heart
  • 4 tablespoons coconut oil or other good-quality fat
  • 2 handfuls of baby spinach or kale leaves
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 French shallots, finely chopped
  • 350 g pork mince
  • 150 g beef mince
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 1 egg

  • 2 tablespoons almond meal
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon dried chilli flakes (optional)
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • baby basil leaves, to serve
  • Tomato sauce
  • 800 g beef marrow bones, cut into 5-cm pieces (ask your butcher to do this)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil or other good-quality fat
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 500 g canned crushed tomatoes
  • 8 basil leaves
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
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To make the tomato sauce, pop the marrow out of the bones, slice the marrow into 5-mm thick pieces and set aside. Heat the oil or fat in a saucepan over medium heat, add the garlic and fry until lightly browned. Add the tomatoes and 125 ml of water and simmer for 20–25 minutes. Add the basil and simmer for a further 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.


Preheat the oven to 180°C.


Use your fingers to remove the membranes from the liver and heart, then cut out any little tubes with a small sharp knife. Finely chop the liver and heart and set aside.


Heat 1 tablespoon of oil or fat in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the spinach or kale and cook until just wilted. Remove the pan from the heat, drain and squeeze out any excess liquid from the spinach or kale, then roughly chop. Set aside to cool.


Return the pan to medium heat and add another tablespoon of oil or fat and the garlic and shallot. Fry for 3 minutes, or until the shallot is translucent and the garlic is lightly browned. Set aside.


In a large bowl, mix the pork mince, beef mince, liver, heart, spinach or kale, garlic, shallot, parsley, egg, almond meal, chilli flakes (if using) and some salt and pepper until well incorporated. Place the bowl in the fridge for 30 minutes so that the meat cools a little and will be easier to roll.


Once cool, roll the mixture into golf ball–sized portions. Heat the remaining oil or fat in a large ovenproof frying pan and fry the meatballs (in batches if necessary) until golden on one side. Turn over and place the pan in the oven for 5 minutes until the meatballs are cooked through.


Add the tomato sauce and sliced bone marrow to the meatballs in the pan, cover with a lid and heat gently on the stovetop until ready to serve.


Sprinkle with the basil leaves and serve.