Meatballs are one of those things that as a kid (or as an adult) I could not never get enough of. I could have them everyday and still enjoy them. I’m speaking from experience. I had spaghetti and meatballs every night for an entire summer. All I remember feeling is happiness.
I’m hoping that this is what you will feel when you try these Sweet & Savory Moroccan Spiced Meatballs.
The Sweet & Savory Part
In Moroccan cuisine, the ultimate balance is that of sweet and savory. That is why we use spices like cinnamon and cardamom with red meats such as beef or lamb. Red meats tend to have a very intense flavor that cinnamon tends to go with just perfectly.
And what goes with cinnamon? Sweetness. Hence the use of raisins and caramelized onions.
The choice of onions is very important here, you want to use red onions as they are much sweeter and pack in a lot of flavor.
Lastly, to finish it all off, we add some fresh coriander. Coriander adds freshness and a little peppery taste to the dish which makes it just a joy to eat.
The Meatball Blend
Moroccan-Style Meatballs a.k.a as kafta do not typically include bread crumbs or eggs. They rely on grated onions and fat to keep their moisture in, and it works!
As the recipe card will tell you, that is the method I followed.
I made a flavor/moisture paste in my food processor and mixed with the ground beef and the meatballs turned out very soft and moist. However, I will add that they are not the same texture as your Italian-style meatballs. So, don’t expect that.
A new and original way to enjoy meatballs. If you love meatballs already, then this recipe will be a great addition to your library. You can serve them with bread (the Moroccan Way) or on top of rice. It’s totally up to you.
Sweet and Savoury Moroccan-Style Meatballs
Easy Meatball Dinner Recipe, for anyone looking for a flavor packed meal.
- 600 grams ground beef medium fat
- 1 onion
- 1 tsp harissa
- 1/2 cup fresh coriander
- 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 3 large onions
- 1/2 tsp ras al hanout (optional but highly recommended)
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup beef broth
- 1/2 cup raisins
In a food processor, add all the ingredients except the beef. You will be left with a paste. Add this paste to your beef and mix in a large bowl. Shape meatballs. Set aside.
Heat dutch-oven on medium heat. Add butter and oil. Slice onions into small slices. Add onions and cook, stirring often. Add spices. Deglaze with half of the beef broth. Stir. Add raisins. Stir. Once mixture is dry again, deglaze with the rest of the beef broth and the espresso.
Lower heat to medium-low. Push onions aside and add one meatball at a time, so that the meatballs are on the bottom of the dutch-oven, surrounded by onion mixture. Cover and cook until the fat from the meatballs renders and you're left with sauce. Let meatballs continue cooking uncovered on medium-low heat.
After about 20 minutes of total cooking time, remove the meatballs delicately and continue cooking the sauce until more water evaporates.