Saturday, May 1, 2010

Moroccan Meatballs with Coconut-Saffron Quinoa and Tzaziki Sauce

serves 4-6


Another tasty weeknight dinner! Today we ate the leftovers in wrap-form, and are currently scheming ways to use up all of the tzaziki sauce. My number one plan right now is to get a perfectly ripe avocado and turn it into cold cucumber-avocado soup.


1 C quinoa, rinsed

2 C broth

1/4 C shredded coconut (mine was sweetened)

1/4 C diced green onion

1/4 C diced celery

1/4 C raisins

1/2 tsp cardamom

1/2 tsp cumin

generous pinch of saffron

1/2 C toasted sliced almonds

Start the quinoa first because it will take 30+ minutes to cook, painlessly. Combine all ingredients except the almonds in a medium size pot, bring to a boil, then turn heat to low, cover and simmer until water is absorbed and quinoa is tender. When ready to serve, garnish with toasted sliced almonds.



1 lb ground meat (I like to mix beef and turkey or pork)

1/2 a medium onion, minced

1 clove garlic, minced

1/4 C bread crumbs

1/4 dried fruit (I used a mix of mango, papaya, raisins and kiwi)

1 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp curry powder

1/2 tsp ginger

1/2 tsp cardamom

1/4 tsp chili powder

1/4 tsp aleppo pepper flakes (a turkish pepper—cayenne will work fine, but will be spicier)

First step is to finely chop the dried fruit in your food processor. From there mix everything together (I find hands work best) until homogenous, form into 1-2-in balls. I like to cook them in a little peanut oil over medium heat, covering them once they’re browned to cook the insides well. It should take 12-15 minutes on the stove top.


Tzaziki Sauce

1 C thick plain yogurt

1 large cucumber peeled and sliced thinly

1 1/2 tsp salt, divided

2 Tbs olive oil

1 green onion, sliced

1 clove garlic, smashed

juice of 1/2 lemon

Depending on how thick you like your tzaziki sauce, you have two choices about how to prepare this. If you prefer it on the runny side (to be drizzled over your food), just put everything in and puree away. If you like it thicker, salt the cucumbers and let them drain in a colander for 30-45 minutes before blending everything together.


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