harissa lamb meatballs with aleppo pepper, sumac and chickpea spread

Lamb meatballs with chickpea dip (not calling it a hummus because there’s no lemon and half as much garlic as i’d like).

Mum life has changed a lot of things but never did I think it was going to change the way I cook. Now, the weekends are meal-prep-crunch-time, where I batch make 2-3 meals that we can enjoy for dinner / lunch. I’ve been craving lamb meatballs like these for some time so when I got the chance I jumped on it. These are cooked in a spicy, tomato-y harissa sauce and served with a chickpea dip similar to hummus, I ran out of lemons to I added a dash of champagne vinegar and only added a clove (ok a large one) of garlic and some aquafaba to make it extra silky. Hope you enjoy!

Ingredients

For the Harissa meatballs

1 pound ground lamb

1 shallot, minced

5 large garlic cloves, minced, divided

1 egg

1/3 cup panko or breadcrumbs of choice

1/4 cup packed chopped parsley

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

Ground black pepper and salt to taste

2 tablespoons olive oil

10 ounces jar harissa

6 ounces can tomato paste

For the chickpea dip

1 14 1/2 ounce chickpeas

1 teaspoon champagne vinegar

1/4 cup tahini

3 tablespoons aquafaba (canned chickpea juice)

1 large garlic clove

2 tablespoons olive oil

Salt to taste

Directions

For the meatballs

In a bowl mix lamb, shallot, 3 cloves minced garlic, parsley, cumin and salt and pepper. Roll out mixture into two tablespoon sized meatballs, set aside.

*Note: Be sure to test a portion of the meatball by cooking it for seasoning. Feel free to size the meatballs to your desire, fewer large sized or super cute miniature meatballs (which I highly recommend).

For the tomato harissa sauce

In a wide bottomed saucepan or sauté pan, heat olive oil and fry remaining garlic until ever so slightly golden on the edges. Add tomato paste and cook until darker in color, add harissa and cook down for 5 minutes.

*Note: If the mixture is thick and not saucy (not all harissa sauces are created equal, keep in mind you want the end product to be similar to a tomato sauce for pasta), add a third cup of water at a time to get the desired texture.

Add the meatballs to the sauce ensuring each piece isn’t touching, cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 145 degrees F.

For the chickpea dip

Add chickpeas, champagne vinegar, tahini, garlic, olive oil to a food processor. Blend on medium and add aquafaba, one table spoon at a time, until the desired consistency reached.

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