Bellissima Nigellisima: Try this winter warming Shortcut Sausage Meatballs recipe

Nothing beats a super-fast dish from Nigella Lawson and her new book Nigellisima (Chatto & Windus) is packed with seriously delicious recipe ideas, including this Shortcut Sausage Meatballs recipe. Do try this at home. You can also shop for Nigella Lawson kitchenwares on promotion at ACHICA. 'There is always great jubilation in my house when meatballs are on the menu, and with this recipe it's easy to rustle them up in minutes,' says Nigella Lawson. 'Don’t worry if you can’t get Italian sausages easily; I gave this recipe to an Italian friend of mine and she – ironically – chooses to fashion hers out of everyday English Porkinsons. And if that’s good enough for her...'

Nigella Lawson's Shortcut Sausage Meatballs recipe

Serves 4, makes approx. 40 meatballs


450–500g Italian sausages

2 x 15ml tablespoons

Garlic oil

4 fat or 6 spindly spring

Onions, finely sliced

1 teaspoon dried oregano

60ml white wine or


2 x 400g cans chopped

Tomatoes, plus water to

Rinse 1⁄2 can

2 bay leaves

Salt and pepper, to taste

Chopped fresh parsley to serve (optional)


Squeeze the sausage meat from the sausages and roll small cherry-tomato-sized meatballs out of it. Put them onto a clingfilm-lined baking tray as you go. Your final tally should be around 40.

Heat the oil in a large, heavy-based pan or flameproof casserole and add the meatballs, frying them until golden; as they become firmer, nudge them up in the pan to make room for the rest, if you can’t fit them all in at first.

When all the meatballs are in the pan and browned, add the spring onion and oregano and stir gently. Add the wine or vermouth and chopped tomatoes.

Fill half of one of the empty cans with cold water and tip it into the other empty can, then into the pan. The can-to-can technique is just my way of making sure you swill out as much of the tomato residue as possible.

Pop in the bay leaves and let the pan come to a fast simmer. Leave to cook like this, uncovered, for 20 minutes until the sauce has slightly thickened and the meatballs are cooked through.

Check the sauce for seasoning and add some salt and pepper if necessary.

During this time you can cook whatever you fancy to go with the meatballs, whether it be pasta, rice, whatever. Once the meatballs are ready, you can eat them immediately or let them stand, off the heat but still on the stove, for 15 minutes. The sauce will thicken up a bit on standing.

Should your diners be other than children who baulk at green bits, sprinkle with parsley on serving.

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Keya Modessa, ACHICA Features Writer

View all posts by Keya Modessa, ACHICA Features Writer