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Meatballs With Chick Peas & Preserved Lemon -- Morocco

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“This recipe is one of my family's all time favourite meals. We used to make this with ground lamb or beef but decided that it was healthier (& just as tasty) to use chicken instead. You need plenty of fresh crusty bread to mop the delicious sauce up with. Sometimes I double up on the meatball ingredients & freeze half of the prepared meatballs to make it easier next time I cook this dish!”
2hrs 30mins

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. To Make The Meatballs:.
  2. Tear the bread into tiny pieces - to make breadcrumbs.
  3. In a large bowl, mix all of the meatball ingredients. Use your hands to squich the mixture together until it is mixed really well (I usually wear gloves to do this!).
  4. Allow the mixture to stand for 5 minutes then taking a tablespoon at a time, roll into meatballs.
  5. Gently fry them in a little olive oil or sunflower oil, until they are golden on all sides. Drain on kitchen paper & set aside.
  6. To Make The Sauce:.
  7. Fry the onion in a little oil. When it is a pale golden colour, add the spices & cook for a further minute.
  8. Remove the flesh from the preserved lemon. Wash well to remove some of the saltiness then cut very finely. Add the lemon & the rest of the ingredients (except the cilantro & the lemon juice) to the pan.
  9. Cover & simmer for 1 hour.
  10. After an hour, remove the lid. Reduce the sauce until you have just enough to serve the meatballs in - you don't want too much but you don't want to serve dry meatballs either! When the sauce is the right consistency, add the cilantro & lemon juice & cook for a minute.
  11. Sprinkle more finely chopped cilantro over the top & serve.

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