Spicy lamb meatballs are a new twist to dinner
Fall is in the air, and what better way to spice up an end-of-work week dinner or weekend meal than with something different.
Lamb is a mild-tasting meat, and sometimes you can find great lamb products from local farmers, too. This recipe is easy and they are great for company. You can make a lot of meatballs ahead of time and have them ready for the oven as an appetizer along with dips like hummus, salads, grains, pasta salads, etc.
Fresh, light, easy hummus and tabouli is great served as a side with the lamb meatballs. A garnish of a low-fat good quality yogurt and you have a fantastic, special plating for all year long. Lamb is great served in any season.
For fall, lamb meatballs would be lovely with rice, couscous, a grain salad, or some of your favorite sweet roasted fall squash or farm-stand fall vegetables.
You make this dish your own and add sides that you and your family enjoy to make and to eat.
Spiced Lamb Meatballs with tabouli, hummus
Spiced Lamb Meatballs
½ pound of 80/20 ground beef
½ pound of ground lamb
½ cup of panko plain breadcrumbs
1 large egg
½ teaspoon of smoked paprika
½ teaspoon of cumin
¼ teaspoon of chili flakes
1 ½ teaspoons of salt
2 tablespoons of olive oil plus more for the pan
¼ cup of fresh parsley, chopped
Preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Your cold ingredients should be brought to room temperature. In a bowl, mix all of your ingredients together, except the ground beef and ground lamb.
Add the grounds meats and mix just to combine. Do not overmix. Divide your meatball mix into approximately 12 evenly sized meatballs and roll.
You can have a small bowl of water on the side, to dip your hands in when rolling your meatballs, remembering to shake off all excess water. Place your formed meatballs onto a lightly oiled baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes.
1½ cups of freshly cooked or canned chickpeas (I prefer to cook them myself for an even fresher flavor. You decide, with what time you have.)
2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ cup of tahini paste
1 clove of garlic, course chop
1/8 teaspoon of cumin
3 tablespoons of olive oil (2 tablespoons for the recipe and 1 tablespoon as a garnish drizzle)
Salt, to taste
2 tablespoons of ice cold water
Za’atar, optional garnish
Place your cooked or canned chickpeas and chopped garlic into the bowl of your food processor. Blend both to make a paste.
Add the rest of the ingredients, except for 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Run the food processor for 2-3 minutes. This will help to aerate your hummus.
Scrape down the sides of the bowl, as needed.
Place your hummus in a serving dish or a storage container, after drizzling with the oil garnish (1 tablespoon) and a sprinkle or two of the Za’atar (optional).
1 cup of bulgur wheat, uncooked
4 scallions, chopped
2 cups of fresh parsley, chopped
1 cup of fresh mint, chopped
2 large tomatoes, small dice
1 English cucumber or two garden medium cucumbers, small dice
4 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup of olive oil, or to your taste
Salt and black pepper, to taste
Cook your bulgur wheat as directed. However, add a little less water when cooking. Set aside to cool.
Prepare your vegetables and herbs.
Fold all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. Chill. Serve cold, cool or room temperature.
Sarah Schweitzer is dual-certified in Culinary Arts and Baking & Pastry from the Escoffier School of Culinary Arts. She is a former line cook for Chef Robert Irvine at “Fresh Kitchen by Robert Irvine” which was located at the Downtown Allentown Market. Sarah is currently working as a Sous-Chef at Ateira’s on First and has her own blog simplysarah.online. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.