Spanish Lamb Meatballs
with roasted cauliflower, chickpeas, and mint
These Spanish meatballs are flavored with so much fragrant spice that everyone will love them!
Smarts: Pimentón is Spanish paprika that has been smoked. It comes in three types: sweet, bittersweet, and spicy. Any of them are fine for this recipe, just be careful if using the spicy variety - it can be quite hot! If you can't find it, just use regular paprika.
- Onions - 1, chopped
- Garlic - 3 cloves, minced
- Mint, fresh - 3 Tbsp, finely chopped
- Ground lamb, lean - 1 lb
- Salt - 1 tsp
- Black pepper - 1/2 tsp
- Cumin - 1 1/2 tsp
- Paprika, smoked - 1 1/2 tsp ((preferably Spanish Pimentón))
- Eggs - 1, beaten
- Cooking oil - 1 1/2 Tbsp
- Crushed tomatoes (28 oz / 794 g can) - 1 can
- Red wine vinegar - 1/4 cup
- Chicken stock - 1 cup
- Mint, fresh - 1 Tbsp, finely chopped
- Cauliflower - 1 head, thinly sliced
- Garbanzo beans (14 oz / 397 g can) - 1 can, drained and rinsed
- Cooking oil - 1 Tbsp
- Paprika, smoked - 2 tsp (preferably Spanish Pimentón)
- Cumin - 2 tsp
- Lemons - 1/2, juice of
- Onions / Garlic / Mint (for meatballs and cauliflower) - Prep as directed. (Can be done up to 3 days ahead)
- Cauliflower - Prep as directed. (Can be done up to 3 days ahead)
- Make meatballs - In a mixing bowl, add the lamb, garlic, mint, salt, pepper, cumin, paprika, and the egg in a large bowl. Gently knead the meatball mixture with your hands just until all the ingredients are thoroughly combined. Wet your hands, then break off a piece of the mixture and roll into a 1-inch balls. (Can be done up to 1 day ahead)
- Garbanzo beans - Drain and rinse.
- Preheat the oven to 450F (232C) degrees.
- Arrange cauliflower on a sheet pan and drizzle with oil, smoked paprika, cumin, and some salt and pepper. Toss to coat.
- Place cauliflower in the oven and roast until the edges are brown and become crisp, ~20 minutes. When the cauliflower has browned, add chickpeas to pan and allow to heat through another 2 minutes.
- While the cauliflower is roasting, heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add meatballs and brown all over, 3 to 4 minutes, shaking the skillet so that the meatballs brown evenly. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the browned meatballs to a bowl.
- If the meatballs have released too much fat, drain off all but 1 tablespoon (for 4 servings; adjust accordingly if customizing). Add the onion and cook until soft and lightly browned, ~5 minutes. Add tomatoes, red wine vinegar, and chicken stock, and cook to blend the flavors and reduce the sauce, ~5 minutes.
- Add the meatballs to the sauce and cook over medium-high heat until they are cooked through and the sauce reduces, ~5 to 10 minutes
- Remove cauliflower and chickpeas from oven when crispy. Drizzle with fresh lemon juice, and sprinkle with fresh mint.
- Assemble plates of meatballs in sauce and roasted cauliflower with chickpeas. If desired, garnish meatballs with additional chopped mint. NOTE: If you have leftover yogurt sauce from the Indian chicken wraps, or extra plain yogurt in the fridge it makes a great topping to the meatballs. Enjoy!
Subbed soyrizo for lentils and added some cabbage, but otherwise kept the other ingredients as is. Very delicious soup!0 Helpful
So so good! I doubled the meat and all spices in the meatballs and used about half of the stock called for. Added pita bread on the side. Definitely company worthy.0 Helpful
I skipped the mint and the egg but followed everything else as written (besides a little extra garlic). So delicious! This makes a lot of sauce but it's great over the veggies too. I thought the sauce was tasty, I added a little salt to taste, a little bit of fat I drained from the meatballs and a squeeze of lemon. I will be making this one again.0 Helpful
very good. Added some pasta. It made a lot of sauce. I would make again.0 Helpful
This was good but not too exciting. The sauce was thin, and it seemed like too much for the amount of meatballs.0 Helpful
Love this sauce! We followed the suggestion to put some yogurt on top, and it was delicious.0 Helpful