Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Lamb Meatballs with Tahini Dipping Sauce and Cucumber Salad

serves 2

lamb meatballs:
1 lb ground lamb
1 small eggplant
1 egg
1.5 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp sea salt

Cover a small baking pan with foil and roast the eggplant for 1-1.5 hours at 375 degrees, or until the eggplant is soft. Remove from the oven, peel, and mash with a fork. Set the flesh in a strainer and let the liquid drain off.

Combine the mashed eggplant, lamb, egg, oregano, and sea salt in a large bowl. It will be pretty goopy. Form mixture into meatballs. I like to use a tablespoon measure - if made with heaping tablespoons you should get about 26 meatballs.

Heat a skillet over medium heat. If you use a nonstick skillet, no fat is necessary as the lamb will render out enough. If your skillet is not nonstick, you might want to grease it. Fry the meatballs on three sides until they are nicely browned.


tahini dipping sauce:
1/2 cup tahini
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup water
1 clove garlic
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp ground cumin
handful of fresh cilantro or parsley or both

Toss everything in a food processor and let it rip til it's smooth. It's better to make this at least an hour in advance to let the flavors meld (I make the sauce after I stick the eggplant in the oven and then pull it out of the fridge at serving time).


cucumber salad:
1/2 a large English hothouse cucumber
sea salt
red wine vinegar
extra virgin olive oil

Score the cucumber with a fork and then slice it into thin rounds.

Put the cucumber slices into a strainer or colander and sprinkle with sea salt. Put something heavy on top and let it drain while everything else cooks.

Right before serving, squeeze out all the remaining water and drizzle on some red wine vinegar and extra virgin olive oil.


Anonymous said...

This is such a great idea.

I've been on paleo since October, and I'm beginning to get frustrated with my limited recipes. Everything of yours looks so good.

Unfortunately, my wife and I are redoing our kitchen and have limited cooking facilities - but when the renovation is done, we'll be using a lot of your recipes.

Elizabeth said...

I'm glad the recipes look helpful for you! That "limited food" feeling is exactly one of the reasons that I started this blog. Not only can I inspire other people, but I can inspire myself by hunting out stuff to make and post here.

Bryan - oz4caster said...

Looks very tasty! I also like to make meatballs from ground lamb, though I'm lazy and usually cook them plain or with some spices. My wife and daughter just laugh and tell me I'm eating "lamb balls". They won't eat anything I cook, so I have it all to myself :)

Elizabeth said...

Lol, lamb balls! You should ham it up and make them all jealous while you're loudly enjoying them. ;)

Tracy said...

This looks, and sounds, delicious. I love lamb, but rarely do anything with it other than chops. And the dip - is tahini fairly versatile? I love dipping stuff into stuff, and am getting pretty tired of mayo-based dips!

Anonymous said...

Tried this tahini dip tonight and it was amaaaazing, I can see many uses for it. We loved it made with parsley. So good! Thank you so much for these recipes.

Mark said...

Elizabeth - these were amazing (despite having to use beef b/c the store was out of lamb). Really outstanding. This is the 3rd recipe of yours we tried this week and all have been amazing. Thanks for the great blog and the wonderful cooking ideas.