Use whole white peppercorns rather than the ready-ground white pepper, as the flavour is far superior.

Make these baked pecorino and white pepper meatballs for a comforting family dinner. Also check out more delicious meatball recipes, such as our baked Italian meatballs, healthy meatballs and vegetarian meatballs.


  • 100g fresh white breadcrumbs
  • 4 tbsp milk
  • 600g pork mince
  • 170g pecorino, finely grated
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp white peppercorns, crushed with a pestle and mortar
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • small handful of leaves sage, finely chopped


  • 1kg sweet potatoes, cut into 2-3cm wedges
  • 6 large vine tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 2 red onions, sliced
  • olive oil
  • a small bunch basil, chopped


  • STEP 1

    Put the breadcrumbs in a bowl and pour over the milk, stirring until combined. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well. Take big pinches of the mixture and roll into walnut-sized meatballs. Chill for 30 minutes.

  • STEP 2

    Heat the oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Scatter the sweet potatoes, tomatoes and onions in a roasting tin in a single layer, or spread over 2 baking trays.

  • STEP 3

    Drizzle with 3 tbsp olive oil and toss. Lay the meatballs on top, spreading them out evenly. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and turn the meatballs over, stirring the vegetables too.

  • STEP 4

    Return to the oven for another 20-30 minutes until everything is cooked. Scatter the basil over just before serving.

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