Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Moroccan kefta recipe

One of the signature Moroccan dishes, kefta (meatball) tagine is found in every restaurant from the simplest to the grandest. Beef or lamb mince, mixed with spices and simmered in a delicious tomato sauce, in a heartwarming dish. Eggs can be added at the last minute, too.

1kg minced beef or lamb
1 small onion, very finely chopped
1 egg, beaten (plus 2 or 4 more eggs if required, to serve)
1 cup breadcrumbs
1 tbsp turmeric
1 tbsp paprika
1/4 tsp cayenne
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tbsp ground cumin
1 tbsp ground coriander
salt and pepper
2 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
2 x 400g cans of crushed tomatoes
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp each oregano and thyme
1/4 cup olive oil

Please the meat in a large bowl with the onions and garlic. Mix well and add the egg, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper, and the spices (but not the oregano and thyme). Mix or knead thoroughly to distribute flavorings through meat. Roll meat into 1-inch balls (about 1 tablespoon meat mixture).

Heat 3 tbsp of olive oil in a large saute pan and add the meatballs in batches. Cook on all sides until for approximately 3 minutes until all sides are browned. Place on a paper towel to drain and set aside while you make the sauce. Use the same saute pan for the sauce below.

Meanwhile, heat 3 tbsp of olive oil in the same pan and cook the garlic for a few moments before adding the crushed tomatoes, the remaining cumin and coriander, salt and pepper, and herbs.Bring to a boil then cover and reduce heat to a simmer. Allow to simmer for 30 minutes.

Now, nestle meatballs into the sauce. Gently spoon sauce all over the meatballs to ensure they are generously covered with the sauce. Set over medium heat and cover. Cook for another 12-15 minutes, until meatballs are cooked through.

If you'd like to add the eggs, make indentations in the sauce mixture and crack an egg into each one. Cover and cook for 3 or 4 minutes more until the eggs are set.

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