SPICY MEAT BALL IN RICH TOMATO SAUCE

Homemade meat balls are so satisfying and tasty, suitable for the whole family. This mixture is very versatile and you can substitute the type of meat with the meat of your choice. Once you’ve tried these you will see how easy they are to make. They can be frozen as well, therefore makes a very good last minute meal. It is one of those quick, comforting, homemade suppers that you can enjoy after a long busy day, enjoyed with a glass of red wine may be!!!

Ingredients Serves 4

For the meat ball

  • 250 g quality lean minced lamb or beef
  • 1 medium size small chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 free-range egg
  • 2 Tbs semolina (instead of breadcrumbs)
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp ground cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp Sumac spice (Sumac is a north African spice from berries with a pleasant fruity-tart flavour)
  • Pinch of powdered clove and cinnamon
  • Handful of finely chopped coriander and flat leaves parsley
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary or thyme, finely chopped
  • Zest of a whole lemon
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  1. In a large bowl, mix the mince meat with all the spices, the herbs, the zest, the egg and the semolina. Season and shape into little balls size of golf balls. (If you have time I suggest you leave the mixture in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before shaping them into balls)20141017_115231

Method

For the Rich Tomato Sauce

  • 2 x 400 g good-quality tinned plum tomatoes
  • 1 medium size onion (finely chopped)
  • Sundried tomatoes few half slices (chopped)
  • 2 medium size carrots (cut in small cubes)
  • 1 tsp ground ginger and garlic
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary, finely chopped
  • Fresh coriander to garnish, optional
  • Olive oil
  • Method
  1. Add 3–4 tablespoons of olive oil to a hot pan. Brown the meatballs all over, but be careful not to break them up. Remove the meatball from the pan and set aside.20141017_172836
  2. In the same saucepan on a low heat, sweat the onion until really soft. Gently increase the heat and add the ginger garlic, carrots and chopped sun dried tomatoes, leave to cook on low heat until slightly caramelized.
  3. Add the tomatoes, herbs apart from the coriander leaves, season lightly and cook gently for 30 minutes until reduced to a thick concentrated tomato sauce.
  4. On a low heat add the meatball, cover and leave to simmer for another 5mins.20141110_194249
  5. Garnish with coriander/parsley and serve with spaghetti, macaroni or other pasta or boiled rice.
  6. I’ve served mine with grilled tender asparagus stems.

Brinda’s Note: This mixture can be shaped into burgers instead of meat balls. With regards to herbs you can add other herbs such oregano, mint or even add curry leaves finely chopped. Good mixture of herbs will only enhance the flavour.