750g/1lb 10oz chicken mince, made up of half breast meat and half thigh meat
olive oil, for frying
1 tsp dried oregano
50g/1¾oz gluten free breadcrumbs
1 free-range egg, beaten
50ml/2fl oz double cream
30g/1oz Parmesan, finely grated
generous grating of nutmeg
20 mini mozzarella balls, plus extra for topping
16 basil leaves
200g/7oz gluten free pasta
75g/2¾oz Parmesan, grated
few basil leaves
Put 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large saucepan and add the carrots and celery.
Gently fry until very soft and translucent, then add the oregano. Cook for a further minute, and then pour in the wine.
Allow to bubble up for a minute or two, then turn down the heat and add the tinned tomatoes.
Season with salt and pepper. Leave to simmer, covered, for as long as you can, but at least 1 hour, checking regularly and adding a splash of water if it appears to be getting dry.
After the first 20 minutes, check the tomatoes for sweetness and add a pinch of sugar if you think they need it.
Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6.Meanwhile, put the remaining olive oil and the balsamic vinegar into a roasting tin and season with salt and pepper. Mix, then coat the fresh tomatoes in the olive oil mixture. Roast for about 30 minutes or until soft.
Put the roasted tomatoes in a sieve and press the flesh through into the tomato saucepan, extract every bit of lovely flavour from these beauties. Keep the oven on to cook the meatballs.
To make the meatballs, put the chicken mince in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper.
Add the oregano, gluten free breadcrumbs, egg, lactose free cream, Parmesan and nutmeg to the chicken. Mix very thoroughly. Divide the mixture into 20 balls.
Thoroughly drain the mozzarella balls. Flatten each meatball. Wrap each ball of mozzarella in a basil leaf and put in the middle of the meatball.
Wrap the meat around the mozzarella and basil until it is completely enclosed. Shape gently into a sphere.
Heat a little olive oil in a large frying pan and fry the meatballs on each side until well browned.
Transfer the meatballs to an ovenproof dish and pour over the tomato sauce – they will not be completely covered. Slice the remaining mozzarella and arrange over the sauce, then grate over some more Parmesan. Bake in the preheated oven for around 20-25 minutes until piping hot.
While the meatballs are baking, cook the gluten free pasta according to the packet instructions. Serve together, with more Parmesan grated over if you like. A few perky basil leaves on top look good too.