Under 30 Minutes
Pasta with Turkey Meatballs and Bocconcini
Dark-meat turkey yields more tender meatballs than turkey breast. Tossing the hot pasta with the meatballs and bocconcini melts the cheese a bit. Look for bocconcini at specialty food stores and Italian markets, as well as many supermarkets; they're usually packaged in water or whey for freshness.
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- 3/4 pound ground turkey (93 percent lean, dark meat)
- 1/4 cup plain dry breadcrumbs
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
- 8 ounces orecchiette or other short pasta
- 1/2 pint bocconcini (about 20 balls)
Set a large pot of salted water to boil. In a large bowl, combine turkey, breadcrumbs, garlic, egg, 2 tablespoons Parmesan, 1/4 cup parsley, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper; mix to combine. Using a level 1-tablespoon measure for each, form mixture into meatballs (you should have about 24).
In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon butter over medium-high. Add meatballs, and cook, turning occasionally, until browned all over, 5 to 7 minutes. Add 1 1/2 cups water; simmer, stirring occasionally, until meatballs are cooked through and liquid is reduced to about 1/2 cup, 10 to 12 minutes. Add tomatoes; cook until they begin to soften, about 1 minute.
Meanwhile, cook pasta in boiling water until al dente, according to package instructions. Drain, return to pot, and place on the still-warm burner. Add bocconcini, meatballs and sauce, remaining 1/4 cup parsley, remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan, and remaining tablespoon butter. Season with salt and pepper, and toss until combined.