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Firefighter Mike Munoz
Wantagh Fire Department
Rigatoni with Filetto di Pomodoro and Nona’s Meatballs

Ingredients for Sauce:
• ½ stick unsalted butter (Pflugra)
• ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
• ½ cup red wine (Burgundy)
• 3 cloves fresh garlic, peeled and sliced
• 4-5 fresh leaves of basil
• 1 tsp. kosher salt
• 1 tsp. red pepper flakes

Ingredients for Pasta:
• 1 lb. Rigatoni pasta (serves four adults)

Ingredients for Meatballs:
• 1 lb. fresh ground pork meat
• 1 lb. fresh ground veal meat
• 1 cup fresh seasoned bread crumbs
• ½ cup fresh grated cheese (Pecorino Romano or Parmeggiano Regiano)
• 3 large fresh eggs
• 2 fresh leaves of basil
• ½ tsp. salt
• ½ tsp. ground black pepper
• 1 cup corn or vegetable oil (Mazola, Wesson)

Directions for Sauce:
Place a medium-sized aluminum or stainless steel saucepan on the stove and turn the heat to medium. Into pan add the olive oil and sliced garlic, stirring and allowing the garlic to lightly brown. Then add the plum tomatoes, squeezing each one as you add it to the pan, stir and allow it to cook for 2-3 minutes. Now add the kosher salt, red pepper flakes, wine and basil, allow to simmer 10-15 minutes then add the butter, stirring and reducing heat to low, allowing to cook for another 10 minutes.

Directions for Meatballs:
In a large metal mixing bowl place the veal and pork chop meat. To the meat add the eggs, grated cheese, basil (chopped small), salt, pepper and bread crumbs (moistened with water). Gingerly mix all ingredients together well. In a large (preferably black cast-iron) skillet place the oil and place on stove over high heat. Take a handful of the meat mixture (enough to fill the palm of your hand with fingers “cupped”) and begin to make a “ball” by rolling mixture around between your two hands. When formed, mix should resemble a “ball,” then place into hot oil and allow to “fry” on one side until brown, then turn on all sides until fully cooked.


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