Spaghetti & Meatballs

Spaghetti Sauce Recipe:
2 T. Olive Oil
2/3 cup chopped onion
4 - 5 cloves of garlic
2 - 28 oz cans ground peeled tomatoes
2 - 12 oz cans tomato paste
2 3/4 cups water
2 - tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp pepper
2 - T. sugar ( I used a bit more)
6-8 sweet Italian sausage, cooked (optional) 
1 - bay leaf (optional)
Meatball Recipe:
1 1/2 lbs ground beef (85% lean)
2 - eggs
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 T. dried minced onion
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
1/2 tsp pepper

Preheat oven to 350 f. In a large bowl, mix all the meatball ingredients together. Use a 1/4 cup measure for large meatballs or a small cookie scoop to form meatballs. Place all the meatballs and the sausage on a large baking sheet and bake for 25 minutes. Set aside. In a large pot heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and stir occasionally until transparent. Add the garlic and stir for one more minute. Turn the heat down to medium low and add the ground tomatoes, tomato paste, water, oregano, pepper, sugar, and pepper flakes. Stir well until smooth. Add the drained meatballs and sausage to the sauce and simmer for 1 1/2 hours. Lower the heat, if the sauce sticks to the pan stir occasionally. If using a bay leaf remove from sauce before eating.

*Crock Pot Version: Saute the onion and garlic in a small sauce pan and then add to the crock pot. Add the remaining ingredients and cook on low for 6 hours. I added the meatballs the last 2- 3 hours of cooking.

*This recipe yields a pretty good amount of sauce. I recommend freezing half of the sauce for another meal.
This would be a great sauce for Lasagna or Baked Ziti.