www.marissa.coMeatballs in A Tomato Sauce Cypriot Style

Cypriot Style Meatballs in A Tomato Sauce (Soutzoukakia)

Cypriot Style Meatballs in A Tomato Sauce (Soutzoukakia) are soft clouds of meatballs nestled in a homemade tomato sauce, all cooked in the oven, are a wonderfully comforting meal in summer or winter. Therapeutically rolling little oval-shaped meatballs is what I call productive mindfulness. You are focused on pinching just the right amount of mincemeat mixture, rolling, shaping, and gently placing them into the tomato sauce. Strategically laying them into rows allows most of the day’s stresses to be pushed to the corner of your brain for all the minutes that it takes to make them.

This dish is made in two stages: the tomato sauce is whizzed together, covered, and placed in the oven while the meatball mixture is prepared. The tomato sauce bubbles away, and the meatballs are dropped into the hot sauce, which cooks the underside well and allows the tops to brown with time.

Greek and Cypriot dishes are frugal without appearing stingy; 500g of mince makes over 40 5cm x 5cm meatballs. This may sound like a huge amount, but you can make a delicious sandwich with any leftovers as the meatballs are delicious cold. Although you can easily do this on the stovetop, oven cooking helps when you aren’t free to stir or check on the pot. This makes for a versatile dinner: serve the meatballs in pita bread with rocket and spinach leaves, over rice, with mash, roasted potatoes and vegetables, or a salad.

Cypriot Style Meatballs in A Tomato Sauce
Preparation time
Cooking time
Total time
Soft mince meat cloud nestled in a tomato sauce served as you wish, in a pita, over rice, pasta or as a little meatball canapé. Any leftovers make a delicious meatball sub.
Recipe type: Mains
Cuisine: Cypriot
Servings: 6-10
  • Meatball Ingredients
  • 500g beef mince, pork or soya mince
  • 2 slices of bread chopped soaked in milk for 10 minutes and squeezed out
  • 1 small potato peeled and cubed
  • 1 tablespoon dried mint
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ cup parmesan cheese grated
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Tomato Sauce
  • 1 tin 400g chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon garlic
  • 2 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 onion
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • ¼ cup red wine
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 10g fresh parsley
  • Optional to serve:
  • Grated cheese to serve halloumi, feta, cheddar or parmesan cheese
  • Mash potato
  • Polenta
  • Rice
  • As a sub in a bread roll or in a pita
  • A big greek
  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celcius.
  2. Start by making the tomato sauce.
  3. Add the tomato sauce ingredients into a food processor and process until smooth.
  4. Add the sauce to a casserole dish 35cm x 25cm that is large enough to house the meatballs and bake in the oven covered.
  5. The meatballs:
  6. Again using the food processor add potato and blend to a smooth consistency, then the onion, cheese and bread, process until the ingredients are blended together.
  7. Add the balance of the ingredients and blend until the ingredients just come together.
  8. Remove the tomato sauce from the oven.
  9. Form the meat mixture into ovals place the meatballs on top of the tomato sauce with a little space between them.
  10. Put the tray back into the oven and bake uncovered until the meatballs are cooked.
  11. This can take about an hour, the meatballs will be a lovely golden colour.
  12. If you are using cheese grate a generous coating on top of the cooked meatballs and add the tray back into the oven to melt the cheese. This will take less than 5 minutes.
For Gluten-Free and Coeliacs
Omit the bread and use a large potato grated

A different take on a simple meal.