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Ingredients:
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
500g minced lamb
50g breadcrumbs
50g pine nuts, toasted and lightly crushed
2 tbsp each of parsley, coriander and mint, finely chopped
1 tbsp dill, finely chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
½ tsp ground allspice
a grating of nutmeg
1 egg
1 lemon
extra herbs, for garnish
flaked sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

FOR THE SAUCE:
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
200g Swiss chard, stems and leaves separated, both shredded
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
500ml chicken stock
250g broad beans (frozen are fine)
2 tbsp coriander leaves, finely chopped
1 tbsp mint leaves, finely chopped
1 tbsp dill, finely chopped

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Lamb Meatballs with Broad Beans and Chard

SERVES: 4

This is based on Egyptian and Israeli meatball dishes and makes a lovely green and fresh bowlful. If you use fresh broad beans, it’s best to remove the outer grey skins to reveal the bright green beans inside. Baby frozen ones should be fine whole. You can also make the meatballs with beef.

Heat the olive oil in a frying pan and add the onion. Fry gently until it is soft and translucent, then add the garlic and cook for another couple of minutes. Allow to cool.

Preheat the oven to 220°C/ Fan 200°C/Gas 7. Put the mince in a large bowl and season it with salt and pepper. Add the breadcrumbs, pine nuts, herbs and spices to the meat, then the cooled onion and garlic and mix thoroughly. Break the egg into the mixture and stir to combine. Shape the meatballs into rounds the size of golf balls – you should have about 20. Place them on a baking tray and bake them in the preheated oven for 10 minutes – they will finish cooking in the sauce.

To make the sauce, heat the olive oil in a large saucepan or casserole. Fry the onion and chard stems for a few minutes, then add the garlic and cook for another minute.

Pour in 400ml of the chicken stock, then add the broad beans and the meatballs. Simmer for 5 minutes.

Put the remaining chicken stock in a separate saucepan and add the chard leaves and chopped herbs. Simmer for a couple of minutes, then blitz with a stick blender until roughly puréed. Add this to the broad beans and meatballs, just before you serve. Squeeze over plenty of lemon juice, then garnish with extra coriander, mint and dill.

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