Photo of Grandma Maroni's Meatballs
Cookbook Reviews

Bobby Flay’s Throwdown!

Cookbook by: Bobby Flay
with Stephanie Banyas and Mariam Garron

Photo of the cover of Bobby Flay's Throwdown! Cookbook

“Throwdown…It sounds like a brutal death match between two wrestlers or an Ultimate Fighting Championship cage fight. But in fact, a Throwdown is a friendly surprise competition and the best part about it is the ending, when we all get to eat some seriously delicious food,” Bobby Flay. 

I love Bobby Flay’s Throwdown, it is such a fun show to watch even now you always learn something from the show. Recently a friend lent me some of her cookbooks and I was so intrigued by Bobby Flay’s Throwdown! cookbook. It gives you Bobby’s recipe and the recipe from the competitor – it also tells you who won the competition. I couldn’t wait to try the recipes from one of the Throwdowns. As a lover of meatballs (meatball sandwiches are my favorite sandwich) I decided to try those recipes. This episode was in Long Island’s Northport and it was Mike Maroni vs Bobby Flay. In the episode Mike Maroni’s Grandma Maroni’s Meatballs won, now to see which one I liked the best. 

Photo of Bobby Flay's Spaghetti and Meatballs

Bobby Flay's Spaghetti & Meatballs

The recipe for Bobby Flay’s spaghetti and meatballs seemed really simple to follow, the hardest part was just locating the ground veal, finally found it at Wegmans. I made the meatball mixture earlier in the afternoon and let it sit in the fridge for about two hours. 

The recipe calls for frying the meatballs until they are golden brown and then putting them to the side and finishing in the sauce. For me I personally prefer meatballs that are cooked in the oven completely as I find otherwise they can fall apart in the sauce, which happened with this recipe. 

The sauce was simple to make had a good flavor, I couldn’t get it to thicken as much as I would have liked and I’m not really sure why. Both the meatballs and sauce tasted really good. 

Photo of Grandma Maroni's Meatballs

Mike Maroni's Grandma Maroni's Meatballs

I love old family recipes and Mike Maroni’s Grandma Maroni’s Meatballs recipe was 100 years old! The ingredients were all really easy to find, except the fresh breadcrumbs – I had to substitute canned, and the recipe directions were very easy to follow. 

I loved how quick the meatball mixture came together and then you could throw them in the oven and focus on the sauce. The sauce was also quick to make, once you finely sliced 12 cloves of garlic, which takes longer than you think. It thickened really nicely and was delicious. 

Once I pulled the meatballs out of the oven I tasted one and they were perfect. We had extra meatballs so I threw them into the freezer to use for another couple of meals in the future. 

Cookbook Ratings: Recipe directions easy to follow: yes, Ingredients easy to find: yes, Specialty ingredients needed: no, Specialty equipment needed: no, Accurate time estimates: yes, Best for home chef skill level: novice, Taste/flavor: delicious, Family friendly: yes, specialty diet: no, How many recipes are unique: most, overall cookbook rating: love it

I made both recipes the same night, which was a little crazy, but great to test them side by side. My winner was clearly Mike Maroni’s Grandma Maroni’s Meatballs. Bobby’s recipe was good but Mike’s meatballs were just unbeatable in my opinion. I know that I will 100% make Mike Maroni’s meatballs again.  

Bobby Flay’s Throwdown! is a fun cookbook that gives you two different recipes to try for one dish. It makes it easy to pick the one that you think you will like the best. What recipes from Bobby Flay’s Throwdown! do you want to try?

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