Tomato & Basil Meatballs with Creamy Polenta

Sweet Monday, homemade tomato and basil meatballs, creamy polenta recipe

Last year whilst living in Melbourne, we dined at The Meatball and Wine Bar, and I had my first experience of creamy polenta! It’s safe to say, after one bite I was sold!! One of my favourite things to eat in life is creamy mash potato, and polenta has the same consistency, but tastes even better. That’s a big statement from me!

Sadly we had not tasted it again since that wonderful day a year ago. So when my parents were in town last weekend visiting, we decided to try our hand at making our own. And I know I say this with every recipe I publish, but… IT’S SO EASY!

Ingredients (serves 4):

  • 500g pork mince
  • 50g bread crumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 6 medium tomatoes, quartered
  • 2 onions, quartered
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 5 sprigs of thyme
  • Half a handful of chopped parsley
  • Handful of basil leaves, left whole
  • 1 courgette
  • 200g polenta
  • 800ml cold water
  • Generous knob of butter
  • 100g parmesan, finely grated


  1. Add tomatoes, onions, half the courgette (chopped), 2 cloves of garlic (left whole), half of the thyme and half of the basil leaves into a roasting dish, with 1tbsp olive oil. Stir and roast in oven at 200 degrees for 25 minutes.
  2. Whilst this is roasting, mix together pork mince, breadcrumbs, 1 egg, 1 clove of garlic (finely chopped), fennel seeds, parsley and half of the thyme.
  3. Knead together into one large ball, and then split into 12, to ensure everything is mixed evenly throughout.
  4. Once your vegetable mix has been in the oven for 15 minutes, add 1tbsp olive oil to a large pan on a medium heat, and add the meatballs. Try not to move them at first, allow to brown (approx 5 mins), before gently rolling them onto their other side and cooking for a further 5 mins. Before turning add the other half of your courgette, chopped into small quarters.
  5. Remove vegetables from the oven and transfer into a blender/chopper. Add the other half of fresh basil and blitz. Add to pan of meatballs, stir together and reduce heat. Simmer for roughly 5 minutes (until polenta is done).
  6. Add 200g of polenta to another pan with 800g cold water, and a knob of butter. Bring to the boil, whisking continuously to prevent any lumps. Once it begins to thicken, add parmesan, continue to whisk and reduce heat.
  7. Serve by spooning polenta onto plate, placing meatballs on top and drizzling with any extra tomato mix. Add basil leaves to garnish.

Sweet Monday, homemade tomato and basil meatballs
Sweet Monday, homemade tomato and basil meatballs, creamy polenta recipe
Sweet Monday, creamy polenta recipe
Sweet Monday, homemade tomato and basil meatballs, creamy polenta recipe

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