This recipe is a bit of a hybrid in that it uses the pressure cooker, the oven and the stovetop. But, the trio work well together to create a tasty dish. The pressure cooker also creates a nice sauce that can be used as a pasta sauce for a second meal. Nice bonus!

Pressure Cooker Meatballs In A Tomato Basil Sauce Over Creamy Cheddar Cheese Polenta
makes 4-6 servings



3/4 lb Lean Ground Beef
1/4 lb Mild Italian Sausage
4 Bacon Slices, finely chopped
1 sm Onion, finely chopped, about 1 cup (chop 1 large onion for both meatballs and sauce)
1/2 med Red Pepper, finely chopped, about 1/4 cup
1 lg Egg, slightly beaten
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Black Pepper
1 tsp Oregano
1 tsp Tarragon
3/4 cu Pank Bread Crumbs
1/3 cu Whole Milk
1/3 cu Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese

Tomato Sauce

1 tbl Olive Oil
1 sm Onion, finely chopped, about 1 cup
3 cloves Garlic, peeled, smashed and minced
1 can Peeled San Marzano Tomatoes, 28 oz size
3/4 cu Chicken Stock
4 oz Tomato Paste
1 tsp Dried Oregano
1/4 cu Fresh Basil, tightly packed, then roughly chopped


3 cu Water
3 cu Chicken Stock
2 tsp Salt
1 1/2 cu Yellow Cornmeal
1 tsp Black Pepper
3 tbl Unsalted Butter
1 cu White Cheddar, freshly grated
1/4 cu Whole Milk (optional)


Freshly Chopped Parsley


To make the sauce, set your pressure cooker to sauté. When hot, add olive oil and onions. Stir and sauté until onions are tender, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for 2 minutes longer. Add tomatoes, chicken stock, tomato paste and oregano. Place top on the pressure cooker and cook at high pressure for 5 minutes. Do a quick release and remove the top. Keep the pressure cooker on warm setting and set aside.

To make the meatballs, preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Gently shape the mixture into 12 meatballs. Place meatballs on a baking sheet or in the cups of a 12 cup cupcake tin and roast for 12 minutes. Remove from oven and transfer meatballs to the pressure cooker. Add basil and stir. Be sure to fully submerge the meatballs in the sauce. Place the top on the pressure cooker and cook at high pressure for 5 minutes. This time use the natural release method. You can use a combination of natural and quick release if polenta is ready before the natural release has completed.

While meatballs and sauce are cooking, make the polenta. Place water and chicken stock in a large saucepan over high heat. Once water is boiling, reduce heat to a simmer and add cornmeal. Stirring occasionally, cook for about 15 minutes until polenta is thick and creamy. Remove from heat and add salt, pepper, butter and cheddar cheese. Stir to combine. If polenta is too thick, stir in the whole milk.

To serve, spoon polenta in to individual serving bowls and top with 3 meatballs. Garnish with fresh parsley.

Extra Sauce For Pasta

This recipe will create a generous amount of sauce. After serving the meatballs, reserve this extra sauce for a pasta dish in the future. Simply reheat sauce in a large saucepan. Prepare 1 pound of pasta according to package directions. Ladle abut a cup of pasta water into a heatproof container and set aside. Drain the pasta and add it to the sauce. Add a small amount of the pasta water if necessary. Season to your taste and serve with toppings of freshly chopped parsley and Parmesan cheese.