March 8, 2011

Meals for the Week?


This week I am trying to make our meals ahead of time, with my schedule and Lula’s early bedtime it really helps to have something at least ready to add a few finishing touches to, otherwise we end up eating at 8 or 9 when I am home.  We saw this recipe on TV Saturday  morning and decided that it would be pretty delicious. I  couldn’t find any ground lamb, so I ground some at home and  mixed it with ground beef for the meatballs. We are also trying a few other recipes from this episode and will let you know how they turn out. Red Pork Posole with Pulled Pork and Pappardelle with Pulled Pork.  Hopefully spending one of my days of cooking for the week will pay off.


Moroccan Meatballs with Eggs

Cook Time: 40 min  Serves: 4 servings


Spice Blend:

  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

Meatballs and Eggs:

  • 1 pound ground lamb or beef
  • 2 slices good quality stale bread, crusts removed, processed into fresh bread crumbs
  • 5 eggs, 1 for meatballs, 4 for poaching and serving, optional
  • 1 medium onion, 1/4 onion grated and juiced, 3/4 onion, chopped
  • 4 large cloves garlic, 2 minced or pasted, 2 sliced
  • 1 small handful fresh mint leaves, leaves picked and finely chopped
  • Pinch ground cinnamon
  • Few grates nutmeg
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for liberal drizzling
  • 1 small zucchini, sliced on an angle or chopped
  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon Spice Blend or Ras el hanout
  • 1 (14-ounce) can chickpeas
  • A handful cilantro, leaves picked and chopped
  • Serving suggestion: Whole wheat couscous or buttered warm flatbread.

Cook's Note: 1 egg only is required for meatballs; the 4 additional eggs are to poach in sauce before serving which is optional.

To make the spice blend: Combine the cumin, coriander, turmeric, paprika, nutmeg cinnamon , cardamom, allspice, cayenne pepper, and ground cloves and store in an airtight container away from heat for up to several months.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Arrange a wire cooling rack over a large baking sheet and place near a large mixing bowl. Place a bowl of warm water nearby.

In the large mixing bowl, combine the meat, bread crumbs, 1 egg lightly beaten, 2 to 3 tablespoons grated onion and juice, 2 cloves minced garlic, mint, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, pepper, and a liberal drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil, about 2 tablespoons. Roll the meat into walnut-size balls with dampened hands (use the bowl of warm water) and arrange the meatballs on the wire rack set over baking tray. Roast the meatballs until cooked through, 20 to 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat more extra-virgin olive oil, a turn of the pan, in a Dutch oven over medium to medium-high heat. Add the chopped onion to the pan with the sliced garlic, and zucchini. Cook 7 to 8 minutes, then add the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, honey, and spice blend, and bring to a bubble. Drain the chickpeas and stir into the sauce. Remove the meatballs from the oven and slide into the sauce. Cool completely and store for make-ahead meal.

To serve, reheat the meatballs in the sauce. Use about 1 cup water to loosen up the sauce, if necessary. Make 4 wells in the sauce and drop in the 4 freshly cracked eggs. Cover the pot and simmer to poach to desired doneness. Scoop the meal into shallow bowls and stir the egg into the meatballs and sauce as you eat.

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