This one requires a lot of 'stuff'...but I promise, it's worth it. I would suggest making the meatballs the day before (or even the week before and defrosting in the fridge overnight) to speed things along—unless you really don't have anything to do the day you make this.

Okay, the stuff:

One pound of bulk Italian sausage—that's the one NOT wrapped in casing. We're making meatballs here. C'mon. Hot or Mild...your choice (pick hot!)

You'll also need about a half cup of dried breadcrumbs—I recommend the pre-seasoned variety, unless you're watching your salt. Of course, you can always make your own. Whatever floats your boat. You'll also need a quarter cup of grated Parmesan, an egg, half a teaspoon of dried (or fresh chopped) basil, black pepper, and a quarter teaspoon of garlic salt. Combine all of this 'stuff'...and, you guessed it, make little meatballs. Think bite sized.

Now, whether you pre-made your meatballs or not, put them in the crockpot along with: four cups of chicken stock (you can cut down cooking time by heating it either on the stove or in the microwave), two tablespoons of tomato paste, and two cloves of minced garlic. In the last thirty minutes of cooking, add in a cup of mini pasta shells and about ten ounces of washed baby spinach leaves. You could also throw in some crushed red pepper flake at this point...if you're feeling brave.

Serve with grated parmesan and toasted garlic bread. (And a spoon. Don't forget the spoon.)



11/25/2009 07:30

Great recipe, at least now i can make use of my new microwave. lol. Thanks for sharing

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