Anyone who is familiar with Malta knows that pulpetti (meat or fish patties) are part of the local cuisine. I'm not a huge fan of fish, but I do like a meat patty. This is how my my mum used to cook meat patties - baked in tomato sauce - and they were one of my favourite dishes growing up.
For the pulpetti:
500g of beef mince (or a mixture of pork and beef)
dried mixed Italian herbs
1 egg, beaten (optional)
olive oil, to cook with
Place the meat and seasoning into a bowl, mix with your hands. Then form it into patties, like this:
You may need to add a beaten egg for the mixture to bind together, but I found I didn't need to. Brown the patties in a saucepan with a little olive oil, then set aside whilst you make the sauce.
For the sauce:
1 onion, finely chopped
100g bacon, finely chopped into small pieces (I may have used a bit more - I love bacon!)
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 can chopped tomatoes
In some olive oil, fry the bacon and onion, until the onion is translucent and the bacon cooked/browned.
Then, add the tomato puree and the chopped tomatoes. Season well and leave to simmer for 15 minutes, until you have a thick sauce.
Place the meat patties into a baking dish, pour the tomato sauce over them and bake for 30 minutes at 180⁰C.
My mum used to serve them with plain boiled potatoes, or mashed potatoes. I served them with some mashed sweet potato and a salad, which went nicely with them.