per­sian­in­spired sup­per


The Chronicle - - Food & Drink -


(Makes 12-14 meat­balls) For the meat­balls: 400g minced beef 200g bas­mati rice, un­cooked 2 onions, peeled (240g) 1 gar­lic clove, peeled 1 small bunch of pars­ley, top leafy part only (about 20g) 1 small bunch of mint, top leafy part only (about 20g) 1 small bunch of co­rian­der, top leafy part only (about 20g) 1tsp ground co­rian­der 1tsp ground turmeric, or grate 2cm fresh turmeric root 1tbsp salt A sprin­kling of white pep­per For the sauce: 3tbsp olive oil 1 onion, peeled and finely diced (120g) 1 leek, thinly sliced and washed 1 gar­lic, peeled and crushed 1 green chilli, thinly sliced 4 cel­ery sticks, thinly sliced 1tsp ground turmeric, or grate 2cm fresh turmeric root 2 dried Per­sian limes (or 3 wide strips of peel from 1 lemon) 2 bay leaves Juice of 1 lemon


1. Place the minced beef and un­cooked rice to­gether in a large bowl. Use a food pro­ces­sor to blitz the onions, gar­lic and fresh herbs to­gether to a paste (or you can chop every­thing by hand very finely) and add to the meat and rice along with the ground co­rian­der, turmeric, salt and pep­per. Mix to­gether un­til fully com­bined and then di­vide into 12-14 balls, each about 80-90g. Cover and store in the fridge un­til you are ready to cook.

2. To make the sauce, heat the olive oil in a shal­low casse­role that is large enough to con­tain all the meat­balls in one layer. Add the onion, leek and gar­lic and cook on a medium heat un­til they soften, then add the chilli, cel­ery, turmeric, Per­sian limes and bay leaves. Mix well and fry for five min­utes, stir­ring oc­ca­sion­ally, then add one litre of boil­ing wa­ter.

3. Bring the mix­ture to the boil and care­fully add the meat­balls to the liq­uid. Bring back to the boil and cook un­cov­ered for five min­utes. Turn the meat­balls over in the liq­uid, then cover and re­duce the heat to low. Keep cov­ered and cook for 30 min­utes. Open the lid care­fully, add the lemon juice, re-cover and cook for the fi­nal 10 min­utes be­fore serv­ing.

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