Easy Moroccan meatballs
This easy Moroccan meatballs recipe is ideal for children aged between nine and 13 to get stuck into, with adult supervision.
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 55 minutes
Price per portion: £1.94
For the Moroccan meatballs
- 1 ½ wholemeal flatbreads (small in size, roughly 20cm in diameter) or pitta
- 120ml milk
- 1kg minced lamb
- A small bunch of parsley, finely chopped
- A small handful of mint, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
For the sauce
- 30ml olive oil
- 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 2 x 800g tins of chopped tomatoes
- 1 ½ tablespoons harissa
- A handful of basil, leaves picked and chopped
- A handful of parsley, chopped
- Salt and pepper
- Rip the flatbread into pieces and soak them in the milk for 10 minutes.
- Once soaked, put the bread into a mixing bowl, add the minced lamb and stir in the parsley, mint, oregano, garlic and some seasoning.
- Mix well, then roll the mixture into walnut-sized balls (about 20g each).
- Either using a griddle pan (the best option) or under a very hot grill, carefully brown the meatballs – this is a quick step as it's all about colouring them and not cooking them through… five minutes total cooking time, turning the meatballs three times on the griddle.
- To make the sauce, heat the olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pan and gently fry the crushed garlic.
- Tip in the chopped tomatoes and harissa and simmer for 25–30 minutes, until the sauce has reduced.
- Add in your freshly made meatballs and continue to simmer for a further 20 minutes with a lid on until the sauce looks about right.
- Lastly, stir in the herbs and have a final seasoning check - you're now ready to eat.
The Leon Cook 5 campaign
Cook 5 is a national campaign launched by co-founders of Leon restaurants, John Vincent and Henry Dimbleby, aimed at getting the UK’s children to learn to Cook 5 things before the age of 16. Participation is simple: children are invited to register on the Cook 5 website, where 15 guideline recipes are provided. All entrants are encouraged to learn to Cook 5 of these savoury dishes and upload photos of their own culinary creations to the site as they go along – mistakes and all!
Moroccan Meatballs is taken from Leon Ingredients and Recipes by Allegra McEvedy, published by Conran Octopus (photography by Georgia Glynn Smith)