Sometimes you get recipes from a cookbook, or online, or from a friend. This recipe for spinach lamb meatballs started in a cookbook in NY, bounced to the US West coast, and then back again to NY. It was a cross-country collaboration!
Here’s what happened. A friend had some ground lamb and was looking for dinner ideas. I mentioned a spinach lamb meatball recipe I had and gave her the ingredients.
She wanted to serve her meatballs with marinara sauce, so I suggested she might want to change it around a bit (the original recipe called for nutmeg, which wasn’t going to work with marinara sauce). Also, while the recipe I had fit her requirements, it was, honestly, a bit bland, and needed more punch.
She added her own spin, then told me what she did. I made a few more changes, and ended up with this recipe.
Red wine vinegar stands up to the lamb’s assertive flavor, while cumin adds a warm, nutty, slightly spicy bite. The spinach adds color, and those all important vitamins and iron too.
It’s pretty easy to put together too. First, you sweat the onions (cook them over low heat for a few minutes, until they become transparent). Then wash and dry the spinach (this is important, otherwise the meatballs will be too moist and won’t hold together). The rest is simply measuring, mixing, and rolling.
Spinach Lamb Meatballs Substitutions and Variations
- try red wine (say a Pinot Noir) instead of the vinegar
- add an extra flavor punch and spice with some harissa
- use ground beef instead of lamb
- skip the cumin and have the meatballs with marinara sauce
- serve the meatballs with Greek yogurt and cucumber
More Lamb Recipes
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Bring a hint of Morocco to your kitchen without traveling. Flavored with cinnamon, cumin, carrots, and chili, this dish is warm, spicy, and only takes about 30 minutes to prepare.
A feast for both the eyes and the taste buds, these meatballs are flavored with toasted nuts, sweet/minty cardamom, and earthy spinach. No eggs needed and no breadcrumbs.