Monday, October 15, 2007

Moroccan Lamb Meatballs with Chickpeas and Tomatoes Over Pita

This recipe is based on one for lamb meatballs from the Amateur Gourmet. His recipe called for simple meatballs served with yogurt, but I thought I would prefer something more substantial. I decided go on a play of the Italian meatball hero - lamb meatballs instead of pork/sirloin/turkey mix; tomatoes and chickpeas with Moroccan spices instead of traditional tomato sauce; and warmed pita bread instead of toasted hero bread. I also cooked it all in the oven instead of frying to cut down on oil. It bubbled up nicely and tasted sweeter than I expected, maybe because my cilantro was wilting and lacking in flavor to cut through the other spices.
1 can chickpeas
1/2 can crushed tomatoes
1/2 onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp coriander
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp sweet paprika
salt
pepper

Combine above ingredients in a baking dish. Preheat oven to 375.

1 lb ground lamb
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 onion, minced
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp coriander
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp sweet paprika
1/3 cup fresh mint leaves finely chopped
salt
pepper

Combine above ingredients in a bowl. Form into approximately 12 small meatballs and place in chickpe-tomato mixture in baking dish. Bake for approximately 35 minutes. Check to see if meatballs are done and add 1/4 cup fresh chopped mint and 1/4 cup fresh chopped cilantro. Cook for another few minutes. Remove from heat and let cool a couple minutes. Serve over warm pita (or rice).

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