Sunday, September 07, 2008

Pear shaped meatballs..

No, not really, but that's the way the experiment went. I started out wanting to make something greek inspired, flavour-wise. I had ground lamb, black olives, lemons, brined goat feta, oregano, aubergines, fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, thick yoghurt and a huge bouquet of fresh mint and dill..

Easy right?

Not so much. I started with meatballs, I had herbal lemony lamb skewers in mind but that didn't happen. Instead of roasting a small aubergine, I used up some extra baba ghanouj (in the meatballs) and some smashed, pitted black olives (also in the meatballs) plus the usual suspects of egg and breadcrumbs in 500g of ground lamb.

Then, I might have got a little carried away: I zested a lemon, added the juice and seasoned it with oregano, dill, salt and pepper, a little crushed garlic, few more black olives and I shared a splash of white wine (Domaine Costantin Lazaridi Amethystos 2006 - a lovely sauv/sem blend) from my glass.

After all this, it tasted great, but no way was my little bit-o-lamb going to stay in meatball form.

Solution: Little individual 'greek' meatloaves. I set the oven to 180C, filled 4 ramekins with the wildly fragrant mixture and baked them until the tops were golden.

Alongside fresh pita, sliced tomatoes and olive oil, crumbled feta and more kalamata olives.. I turned out the meatloaf and served it with a dollop of homemade tsaziki.

What's Greek for 'mangia'?

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