Thursday, May 17, 2012

Beef and Lamb Meatballs Baked in Tahini

This isn't the most visually appealing dish, but between the flavour of the meatballs and the delicious sauce, I don't think anyone will be complaining. Best of all, this dish might even qualify for the title of quick and easy. The whole thing comes together in under 30 minutes, but tastes like so much more time and energy was spent on dinner.

I didn't realize until now, but for some reason, my brain did not see beef when I looked at this recipe. I used ground veal instead of the beef. Perhaps because that's what was sitting in my freezer. I'm sure it's fine either way, but maybe you should try both and compare.

Beef and Lamb Meatballs Baked in Tahini (from Ottolenghi)

35g stale white bread, crusts removed (I used homemade pumpernickel because that's all I had)
300g ground beef (I read this as veal)
300g ground lamb
3 garlic cloves, minced
35g flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped (I used cilantro)
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
2 1/2 tsp ground allspice
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 egg
olive oil
1 tbsp chopped parsley for garnish (I omitted)
zest of 1/2 lemon for garnish (I omitted)
Tahini sauce
150 ml Tahini paste
150 ml water
70 ml white wine vinegar
1 garlic clove, minced
pinch of salt

1. In a bowl, mix together tahini sauce ingredients until smooth and creamy.
2. Preheat oven to 400F.
3. Soak bread in cold water for 2 - 3 minutes until soft. Squeeze out water and crumble into a separate mixing bowl.
4. To bread, add beef, lamb, garlic, parsley, salt, pepper, allspice, cinnamon, and egg. Mix well.
5. Shape meat into ball, roughly the size of golf balls.
6. In an oven-safe frying pan, pour in olive oil to coat pan and heat over medium
7. Shallow-fry meatballs in batches for 2 minutes or until uniformly brown.
8. Drain excess oil and place meatballs in frying pan. Place in oven for 5 minutes.
9. Pour tahini sauce over and around meatballs and return to oven for another 10 minutes or until meatballs are cooked through.
10. If desired, garnish with parsley and lemon zest.

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