These meatballs have a great texture and are not heavy due to the panko breadcrumbs. You can substitute traditional breadcrumbs, but they won’t come out as light.
This dish has big flavors. The garlic mellows with the long simmer time, but you can reduce it if you like it milder. The anchovies will dissolve in the sauce and add subtle depth. (This also works for any sauce you’d like to kick up a notch). Romano cheese has a sharper flavor than parmesan which I really enjoy. Simmering the meatballs in the sauce gives them even more flavor.
Also using the best canned tomatoes you can find will add a lot of flavor. Carefully read the fine print on the label; many are not true San Marzano tomatoes.
This recipe makes approximately 22 meatballs. This is usually more than I need so I freeze the remaining meatballs uncooked. You can serve these by themselves or with pasta.
For the sauce: