Hand-Mixed Polpette

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“Polpette”, Italian for meatballs. My version calls on the holy trinity of meats veal, pork, beef, and sausage for extra deliciousness. The secret to a great meatball is a balance of meats, parmigiano & pecorino cheeses, and bread soaked in milk to lighten up the texture. No breadcrumbs! This is a Palladino family favorite!


  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 pound ground veal
  • 1 pound mild Italian sausage
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 2 tablespoons garlic, minced
  • 4 cups, stale bread, diced
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup Parmigiano, grated
  • ½ cup Pecorino, grated
  • ½ cup Italian parsley, chopped


  1. Sweat onions and garlic in olive oil without color, and cool.
  2. Place stale bread in 250f oven for 30 min. Completely cool
  3. Spread plastic wrap in several shingled layers on work counter.
  4. Place cool bread pieces into a bowl and pour milk over, coating thoroughly all over bread. Let stand 10 minutes.
  5. Completely squeeze milk out of bread.
  6. Place all ground meats, cooled onions & garlic, soaked and drained bread, cheeses, parsley, salt and freshly ground pepper on the plastic wrap lined counter.
  7. Wearing gloves, start to combine mixture like you are rolling bread dough, forward and back, and folding onto itself until well combined.
  8. Make a tester piece, and cook in a frying pan. Taste for seasoning and cheese. If you prefer more, add it.
  9. Form into balls and cook in a pan, or roast in an oven.

**If making with tomato sauce, pan fry or roast polpette, cover with sauce and cook 30 minutes. Serve with favorite pasta shape**