Foodie Friday: Tandoori Lamb Balls Recipe from The Meatball Shop

I’ve been experimenting with The Meatball Shop Cookbook ever since I bought it for my boyfriend for Christmas last year. I guess it’s still a gift for him if he gets to eat what I cook, right?

So a few weeks ago I tried my hand at Tandoori Lamb Balls. In a word? Brilliant. I’ve been participating in a Skillshare class called Show Us Your Balls: Meatball Making with The Meatball Shop, and was able to reflect on having cooked these before watching some of the training videos. There were definitely some pointers that I will use in future meatball recipes.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pounds ground lamb
  • ½ cup bread crumbs
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro (stems included)
  • juice from 1 lemon
  • ¼ cup tandoori spice mix
  • 2 teaspoons salt

First thing’s first: The tandoori spice:969bfaeb

2 teaspoons ground ginger; 2 teaspoons ground cumin; 2 teaspoons ground coriander; 2 teaspoons sweet paprika; 2 teaspoons tumeric (not pictured); 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper. I know I tweaked this a bit, but it was a while ago and I can’t remember what I did.

Question: What is sweet paprika? How is it different from regular paprika? I assume it’s sweeter (duh), but figured I’d ask. I decided that as long as I had most of the basic elements, I’d have something close to the intended flavor, so I didn’t sweat it too much.

I combined all of my ingredients and made a test meatball on the stove, which I’m proud of since I decided to do this on my own before watching  Meatball Shop co-founder and executive chef Daniel Holzman’s training video. He made a good point to flatten the meatball before frying it to test – would have been much faster.

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Once I had my flavor down, it was time to roll the balls. Holzman recommends using an ice cream scoop, this way the meatballs are evenly sized, so they will cook evenly. Roast at 450° for 20 minutes.

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I combined the balls with The Meatball Shop’s Cilantro Yogurt Sauce and a side of roasted Brussels sprouts with apples and honey roasted pecans.

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Next up: I’ve practiced the basics of making meatballs a few times, so I’d like to try to think up an original recipe next.

Question: What are your favorite kind of meatballs? Do you prefer traditional, or do you have a special unique flavor combination? Please share!

Awkward & Awesome Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving has to be, hands down, one of the best holidays ever. Who doesn’t enjoy a good feast with people you love? Most of my Thanksgivings have been spent at my parents’ or an uncle’s house, with my whole big, Italian family, cousins and all.

This year, I’m doing something different. And on that note, let’s dive into this week’s awkward and awesome.

AWKWARD

  • I’m hosting Thanksgiving today. In my shoebox Manhattan apartment. Ok, it’s just Jamie, his parents and me, so we’re not packed in liked sardines, but when the “what should we do for Thanksgiving this year?” conversation came up a few weeks ago, this was the farthest thought from my mind.
  • There is a 17-pound bird in my “easy bake oven.” Manhattan kitchens are miniature. I have a thin, short refrigerator, a dishwasher one-third the size of the one at my parents’ house, and my oven is…the size of a 17-pound turkey apparently. I’ll let you know how this works out. 
  • There is no hustle-bustle buzz. It feels so strange not being in a big house surrounded by my entire family.
  • No candied sweet potatoes for me. Candied sweet potatoes are my late grandfather’s specialty, and my mom has done a beautiful job of keeping the tradition alive. If there is any food item I am sentimental about, it’s them. Mom, if you’re reading this, I’m expecting you to save me leftovers!

AWESOME

  • I didn’t have to deal with traveling on the most traveled day of the year. After all of my horrendous run-ins with NJ Transit over the past three years, I am so very thankful to not be standing on any trains today.
  • I’m cooking (ok, helping cook) my first turkey – and really putting this kitchen to the test. I love cooking new things, and Jamie’s mom is a great teacher, so today will be fun.
  • I made stuffed mushrooms. Mmmm. Check ‘em out.
  • I’m with people I love, there’s food on the table, and I’m seeing my family this weekend. I’m thankful.

What are your thanksgiving traditions? Give me the awkward family stories, those are the best.