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Braised Pork and Fennel Meatballs

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Braised Pork and Fennel Meatballs

Braised Pork and Fennel Meatballs
Frances Janisch
Provided by:
total prep


  • 1 pound lean ground pork
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 teaspoons toasted fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • Braise:
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely sliced
  • 1 small onion, finely sliced
  • 1/2 fennel bulb, trimmed and finely shaved
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 teaspoons ground fennel
  • 1 28 oz can crushed San Marzano tomatoes
  • Crusty baguette, sliced on the bias to serve


  • Combine the pork, garlic, and fennel seeds in a large bowl and season with salt and red pepper flakes. Mix well then form into approximately 14 2-inch round meatballs. Set on a tray in the fridge to firm up while you prepare the braising sauce.
  • In a large Dutch oven heat 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add garlic, onion and fennel. Cook until onions and fennel are very tender and lightly caramelized - about 10-12 minutes. Season with salt and pepper then add ground fennel seeds. Deglaze with white wine and pour in tomatoes. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer, covered for 15 minutes.
  • Set a large saute pan over high heat and add vegetable oil. When very hot, brown meatballs all over, about 2-3 minutes per side. Use a slotted spoon to transfer meatballs to the Dutch oven and nestle them in sauce. Cover slightly with a lid and simmer for 10 minutes until very tender. Serve with toasted baguette points.