Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Ground Lamb Meatballs with a Saffron Sauce

I know I just had a ground lamb Indian dish, but I couldn't resist the sudden availability of small packages of ground lamb at a reasonable price at the store. This recipe is less indulgent than the last one, but still delicious with more spice and a bit of heat. I had a friend over and messed up slightly by forgetting to scoop the lamb meatballs out and then reduce the sauce. I ended up overcooking the lamb a bit and not having a thick broth to pour over the meatballs. I recommend not making that mistake, but promise that the dish will be good even if you do!

One year ago: Slow Cooked Scrambled Eggs with Cream Cheese

Ground Lamb Meatballs with a Saffron Sauce (from 660 Curries)

225g ground lamb
1 tsp coarse kosher salt
1/2 tsp fennel seeds, ground
1/2 tsp black cumin seeds, ground
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 tsp cayenne
3/4 tsp sweet paprika
1/4 tsp saffron threads
4 or 5 black cardamom pods
6 whole cloves, crushed
2 tbsp canola oil

1. Mix lamb, salt, fennel, cumin, ginger, onion and garlic together in a medium-size bowl. Form into 10 balls and place on plate.
2. Pour 2 cups water into a small saucepan, add cayenne, paprika, saffron, cardamom pods, and cloves. Bring to a rolling boil over medium-high heat. Cook, uncovered until you have an aromatic, reddish-orange broth, about 5 minutes. Set aside.
3. Heat oil in a medium-size saucepan over medium heat. Add meatballs and cook, moving to ensure even browning until seared all over, 5 - 7 minutes. Drain off excess fat.
4. Pour spiced broth over meatballs. Raise heat to medium-high and vigorously simmer uncovered, basting every minute or two, until lamb is barely pink inside, about 10 minutes.
5. Remove lamb from broth and transfer to a serving bowl.
6. Continue to simmer broth until it reduces to about 1/2 cup, 8 - 10 minutes. Pour over meatballs and serve.

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