This Middle Eastern meatball banquet is quick enough for a midweek meal but lavish enough for a weekend dinner party.
- 1 tbsp ground cumin
- 1 tbsp sweet paprika
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 tsp sea salt flakes
- ½ cup coriander (cilantro) leaves, chopped
- ½ lemon, juiced
- 1 egg
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp pine nuts, lightly toasted and roughly chopped
- 1 kg (2 lb 3 oz) minced (ground) lamb
- 250 g (9 oz/1 cup) natural yoghurt
- 1 pinch sugar
- 1 tbsp finely chopped mint
- Unleavened grilled flatbread, to serve
- ½ red onion, finely sliced chopped mint
- chopped flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
- halved cherry tomatoes
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Resting time: 1 hour
1. To prepare the meatballs, combine the cumin, paprika, garlic, salt, coriander, lemon juice, egg, olive oil and pine nuts in a large mixing bowl.
2. Add the lamb and mix well using your hands. Using wet hands, roll the mixture into golf ball-sized balls and flatten slightly into thick patties. Place on a tray, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
3. Preheat a barbecue hotplate (griddle) to medium and lightly grease with oil.
4. To make the minted yoghurt, combine the ingredients in a bowl.
5. Cook the meatballs, turning occasionally, for about 7–8 minutes, until cooked through.
6. Toast the flatbreads on one side only for 20 seconds until warmed through and a little charred in places.
7. Serve by loading each uncharred side of the flatbread with onion, mint, parsley, tomato, a few meatballs and then drizzling with minted yoghurt.
Recipe from Feed The Man Meat (Smith Street Books).