Zombie Eyes (Halloween Meatballs)
1 (8 ounce) package spaghetti
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
⅓ cup panko bread crumbs
1 large egg
2 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon parsley flakes
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 pound lean ground beef
1 tablespoon olive oil
8 black olives
1 (1 ounce) stick string cheese
cut into 16 slices
1 (16 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce
Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook spaghetti in the boiling water, stirring occasionally, until tender yet firm to the bite, about 12 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
Whisk Parmesan cheese, bread crumbs, egg, garlic, parley, basil, and oregano together in a large mixing bowl. Fold in ground beef and mix with your hands until blended. Form 16 equal-sized meatballs using a cookie scoop.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Brown meatballs for 3 minutes on each side. Transfer cooked meatballs to a baking sheet using tongs.
Bake browned meatballs in the oven for 8 minutes.
While meatballs bake, use a plastic straw to punch a hole through each olive half to create a circular ‘pupil.’ Use the same straw to punch a hole through the center of each string cheese slice. Insert the round olive piece inside the hole in the string cheese slice to create ‘eyes.’
Remove meatballs from oven and let cool until safe to handle.
Assemble zombie eyes by twirling a few strands of cooked spaghetti around each of 16 forks. Spear a meatball onto each fork and arrange forks on a serving platter. Spoon a dot of spaghetti sauce onto each meatball where you want to place the ‘eyes.’ Apply the olive-cheese ‘eye’ over the sauce. Spoon remaining spaghetti sauce over the twirled spaghetti on the forks.
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