Meatballs on Top of Cavatappi
with Broccoli and Pesto Cream Sauce
Remember that song with the meatball that rolls out the door? You could think of this recipe as an ode to that runaway food. Except instead of spaghetti, you’ve got springy cavatappi—all the better for helping these turkey meatballs to bounce! The whole thing is still all covered with cheese, but you’ll also find herby basil pesto sauce and tender broccoli florets for a verdant burst of green.
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Wash and dry all produce. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Zest lemon until you have 1 tsp zest, then cut lemon into wedges.
In a large bowl, mix together turkey, 2 TBSP pesto, panko, and a pinch of salt and pepper until just combined. Gently shape mixture into golf-ball-sized meatballs with hands— you should have about 12. TIP: Splash a little water on your hands to keep meat from sticking.
Place meatballs on a lightly oiled baking sheet. Bake in oven until fully cooked through and no longer pink in center, 12-15 minutes, flipping halfway through.
Meanwhile, add cavatappi to pot of boiling water. Cook 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, then add broccoli to pot. Continue cooking until cavatappi is al dente and broccoli is tender, about 3 minutes more. Carefully ladle out and reserve 1 cup pasta cooking water, then drain. Return cavatappi and broccoli to pot.
Add sour cream, remaining pesto, and meatballs to pot. Stir to combine, adding enough pasta cooking water to create a thick sauce that coats everything.
Divide pasta mixture between plates. Sprinkle with Parmesan and lemon zest (to taste). Serve with lemon wedges on the side for squeezing over.