Sunday, February 10, 2013

Lamb-Stuffed Quince with Pomegranate & Cilantro

I appear to be two weeks behind on posting recipes, so I'll do my best to catch you up on the highlights today. This dish is a fantastic mix of middle eastern spices with a bit of tart sweetness. The original calls for quince hollowed out with lamb meatballs stuffed inside. If quince is hard to find, you can substitute hard pears. And if you don't feel like hollowing out the fruit, you can chop it up and put it in the sauce. I'm including the within sauce method below, the book has them stuffed.

One year ago: Rabbit with Sichuan Pepper
Two years ago: Sweet Tart Dough
Three years ago: Cranberry Pecan Bread

Lamb-Stuffed Quince with Pomegranate & Cilantro (variation from Jerusalem)

400g ground lamb
1 clove garlic, minced
1 red chile, chopped
20g cilantro, chopped plus 2 tbsp for garnish
50g bread crumbs
1 tsp ground allspice
2 tbsp finely grated fresh ginger
2 medium onions, finely chopped (220g)
1 large egg
4 quince (2 3/4 lb, or hard pears)
juice of 1/2 lemon, plus 1 tbsp lemon juice
3 tbsp olive oil
8 cardamom pods
2 tsp pomegranate molasses
2 tsp sugar
2 cups chicken stock
seeds of 1/2 pomegranate

1. Place lamb in mixing bowl along with garlic, chile, cilantro, breadcrumbs, allspice, half of ginger, half of onion, egg, 3/4 tsp salt, and some pepper. Mix with hands, shape into balls, and set aside.
2. Peel quince and dice. Put in bowl of cold water with juice of 1/2 lemon.
3. Heat olive oil in a large frying pan. Transfer quince, remaining onion, ginger, and cardamom pods to pan. Saute for 10 - 12 minutes until onion has softened.
4. Add molasses, 1 tbsp lemon juice, sugar, stock, 1/2 tsp salt, and some pepper to pan.
5. Add lamb meatballs to pan, lower heat to gentle simmer, cover, and cook for 30 minutes.
6. Lift lid and simmer for a minute or two to reduce sauce.
7. Serve warm or at room temperature sprinkled with cilantro and pomegranate seeds.

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