Arabiata Pasta With Spiced Meat Balls

Richie Wilson shows how a tasty, wholesome dinner doesn't have to cost the earth.


  • 500 g pasta (dry tagliatelle) €1.09
  • 400 g tinned tomato (garlic and herb) €1.19
  • 2 each fresh chili pepper €0.20
  • 500 g mince beef (market value) €1.42
  • 2 each shallot €0.16
  • 2 dash tabasco
  • 5 g fresh basil €0.29
  • 5 g fresh chives €0.39
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • seasoning
  • total €4.74


  1. Begin by making your meat balls so that they have a little time to marinade before cooking.
  2. In a large mixing bowl put the mince, one finely diced shallot along with half of the basil, chives and one chili also finely chopped.
  3. Add to the bowl, the Tabasco, paprika, cayenne pepper and seasoning and mix well, use your hands!
  4. Once you have mixed this well shape the beef into small balls about an ounce or 25 grammes each, this will give you about 20 balls or 5 each. Place these in the fridge now while you prepare the rest of the dish.
  5. Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil and add the pasta, continue to boil hard for about 15 minutes for dry pasta.
  6. Meanwhile, in a warm pan add a little oil and the second of the 2 shallots finely chopped along with the second of the chilies also finely chopped.
  7. Fry these gently until they soften. Now turn up the heat in the pan and add the meat balls.
  8. Gently turn them over a high heat until they are brown all over. Now add the tin of tomatoes to the pan and reduce the heat to a simmer for 10 minutes.
  9. Once the meat ball have cooked remove them from the pan and place in a pot over a low heat to keep them warm while you add the strained pasta to the pan of sauce. Mix the pasta before placing in hot bowls to serve; now you can add the meat balls to each dish making sure everyone gets the same!!
  10. To garnish deep fry the remaining basil in a little oil and place on top, sprinkle with the remaining chives. Enjoy, a little tastier knowing it cost less than a fiver!!


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