I’ve had success with pork meatballs in the past so thought I’d have a shot with a tasty lamb version I spied in Good Food Magazine. They’re a bit of a faff to make, and I really wouldn’t recommend trying to make them at tea time with screeching kids like I did. My stress levels were off the scale actually.
Next time, I’d make them ahead and then all you’ve got to do is fry the meatballs and heat up the sauce. It’s all about being well armed in the combat zone!
I served them up with a light and lemony couscous, which was a perfect sidekick for the rich and fruity lamb.
The boys gobbled them up, Sam had second helpings and didn’t even whinge about there being bits of onion or apricot in like I thought he might. Success!
Lamb and apricot meatballs (BBC Good Food Magazine, August)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 red onions , very finely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves , crushed
- 2 tsp each ground cumin and coriander (or 4 tsp Moroccan spice blend)
- 400g can chopped tomatoes
- ½ tsp sugar
- ½ 20g pack mint , finely chopped
- 500g pack lean lamb mince
- 8 dried apricots , finely chopped
- 50g fresh breadcrumbs
- Heat 2 tsp oil in a pan and soften the onions for 5 mins. Add the garlic and spices and cook for a few mins more. Spoon half the onion mixture into a bowl and set aside to cool. Add the tomatoes, sugar and seasoning to the remaining onions in the pan and simmer for about 10 mins until reduced.
- Meanwhile, add the mint, lamb, apricots and breadcrumbs to the cooled onions, season and mix well with your hands. Shape into little meatballs.
- Heat the rest of the oil in a non-stick pan and fry the meatballs until golden (in batches if you need to). Stir in the sauce with a splash of water and gently cook everything for a few mins until the meatballs are cooked through. Serve with pitta bread and salad.
or make Lamb & apricot burgers
Soften 1 red onion with the spices and garlic as above, then mix with the lamb mince, apricots, mint, breadcrumbs and seasoning. Shape into 4 burgers and grill, barbecue or fry for 5-8 mins on each side until cooked through. Serve in buns with lettuce, cucumber and tzatziki.