Favorite Recipes of Maverick Swaniel Harrienger

{December 17, 2016}   Mexican Spaghetti + Meatballs (The Chopped Cookbook, Food Network, 2014, pages 22-24 [pictured on page 23])

Serves four.


  • 1 pound meatloaf mix [ground pork, veal, + beef]
  • 0.5 dry plain bread crumbs
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon chile powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 5 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 8 ounces vermicelli noodles, broken in half
  • 1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 0.5 cup crumbled queso fresco
  • 0.5 cup loosely packed fresh cilantro leaves, roughly chopped


  1. Gently mix the meat, bread crumbs, egg, 2 teaspoons chile powder, 1 teaspoon oregano, 0.5 teaspoon salt, + a couple pinches of pepper.  Form heaping tablespoons into twenty-four meatballs.
  2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.  When hot, pour in 2 tablespoons oil.  Add half of the meatballs.  Cook 5 minutes, turning often.  Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate.  Add one more tablespoon oil + repeat with the remaining half of the meatballs.
  3. Add the last 2 tablespoons oil to the skillet.  Add the garlic + onion + cook 8 minutes.  Stir in the remaining 1 teaspoon each chile powder + oregano, 1 teaspoon salt, + a couple pinches pepper.  Add the noodles.  Cook 3 minutes, stirring until the noodles start browning + crisping.  Stir in the diced tomatoes + juices, 2 cups water, + the meatballs.  Bring to a simmer, cover, + cook eight to ten minutes.
  4. Spoon the noodles + meatballs into shallow bowls or onto plates.  Top with queso fresco + sprinkle with cilantro.

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