A really lovely light, quick & easy midweek meal. Make extra balls if you wish, they freeze well and you will always find a use for them.
Start by frying half an onion and a finely chopped clove of garlic in a pan on a low temperature with some butter and allow to cool.
In a large mixing bowl place 500g of raw lamb mince and add the cooked onions and garlic. Chop a handful of fresh coriander and mint and add to the lamb mixture with 35g of our Spiced Mango & Lime Spice Rub.
Add a beaten egg, 20g grams of bread crumbs and a tablespoon of greek yoghurt. With your hands or a spoon, combine the mixture and then shape into balls (slightly bigger than golf ball size).
You can shape then into whatever shape you prefer i.e burger shape, kofta etc. Leave in the fridge to rest for 30 minutes before cooking. Once rested and chilled, slowly fry the balls in a pan. Try not to turn them too soon or they may want to break apart.
Once cooked, all the juices will run clear, approx 15 mins. Serve on fresh naan bread with raita or greek yogurt. Top with a generous helping of our Pineapple & Nigella Seed Chutney and the salad of your choice. Enjoy!
500g lamb mince
1tsp butter or oil
1 onion, peeled and finely diced
1 beaten egg
35g Spiced Mango & Lime Dry Spice Rub
20g bread crumbs
chopped fresh coriander
chopped fresh mint
1 tbsp greek yogurt, plus extra for serving
Interesting fact for you...
The ‘Nigella’ in our Spiced Pineapple Chutney has nothing to do with that lovely female chef on the telly, (however we are huge fans!!!) Those little black seeds you can see floating around are Nigella Seeds and are very popular in Indian cooking. They are from the plant Nigella Sativa, the same family as the buttercup, its tiny black seeds are found in a head similar to that of the poppy. Nigella seeds are sometimes referred to as black onion seeds, or black cumin and have a lovely floral note.
Makes 16 balls
680g leftover pea and ham risotto
125g mozzarella, cut into small 1.5cm squares
2 eggs, beaten
150g plain flour
150g dried breadcrumbs
1.5 L sunflower oil for deep frying
Piri Piri Ketchup for dipping
We love risotto, and we have it a lot, its so versatile, we have a basic creamy risotto that we serve with everything;
Roast chicken, pea and ham, grilled salmon, tiny meatballs, rocket & parmesan, garlic mushrooms, chorizo & n'duja (spicy sausage meat)…the list goes on and on.
We always make far too much, so we have plenty left over for the next day. In the past we have added chopped smoked mackerel, skin removed and then a tablespoon (approx 10grams) of our Thai Dry Spice Rub to make amazing little fish cakes.
I will not bore you with the details of making a basic risotto, there are hundreds of great recipes out there to explain this, however the key to a good risotto is a very good stock.
On this occasion we had pea and ham risotto leftover, 680 grams of it, to which we added 20g of Mexican Jalapeno & Lime Rub (nice & spicy) Which made 700g of the mixture, that gave us 16 golf sized balls.
Place your leftover cooling risotto in a plastic container and add the Mexican Jalapeno & Lime Dry Rub, mix well and set in the fridge to chill until needed or overnight. When you are ready take a large baking sheet and cover in no stick baking paper. Using a dessert spoon, or your hands, (messy but fun), portion out 16, roughly the same size, little piles of the mixture on the tray.
We have recently come across an alternative for our risotto leftovers, and we are loving these little Crispy Deep Fried Cheese Filled Risotto Balls. Very common dish in Italy, called Arancini Di Riso. We have given ours a Mexican twist by adding some of our Spicy Mexican Jalapeno & Lime Dry Rub for a bit more spice. These balls are perfect for a light lunch, or as a starter or as part of tapas!
Set up your breading station!
Clear a space and have 3 plates in a row, first the flour, then beaten egg, then the breadcrumbs. Wash your hands and leave them wet, its easier to handle the mixture with wet hands. Pick up your first portion, and press one small cube of mozzarella into the centre, cover the cheese with the gooey rice. The better you cover it, the less likely you will get cheese melting out the side, escaping.
Serve your Crispy Cheesy Fried Risotto Balls either on their own or as part of a meze. We serve ours with a green salad and any dips or sauces that we have lying around at the time. Such as; Carolina BBQ is sweet and tangy or our Piri Piri Ketchup is really great with this, you get a nice sweet kick . Or even try our Blue Cheese Dip! They are really nice cold too, straight out of the fridge. If they last around that long of course.
Drop the ball carefully into the flour and roll, then into the beaten egg, then into the breadcrumbs and cover all over. Roll between your hands to get a nice ball shape. If your mixture is too wet and will not hold a ball, add a little flour to thicken. Place back on the tray and repeat. You might need to wash your hands after doing every four balls, it’s a sticky finger job. Once all balls are done, place the tray in the fridge to chill them for at least 30 minutes.
When you are ready to cook, heat up your oil, deep frying is best for this; you want to reach 200c. Pre heat your oven to 160c, this is for keeping the cooked balls warm while the finish the others, you only want to fry 4-5 balls at a time, so they have enough room. Test your oil is hot enough by dropping a tiny piece of bread in the fat, you want it sizzling away straight away. Once hot enough place your first 4 balls in, they should take around 8-10 minutes, keep checking them, so they don’t overdo, you are looking for a golden coating. Take another baking tray and cover in paper towels. Once done, transfer the balls to the tray and place in the oven, repeat for the rest of the balls.
Instead of dividing the mixture to make large patties, you take small equal amounts of the mixture and roll between your wet hands to make a ball, roughly the size of a golf ball. Fry in a pan in a little oil, rolling them around slowly until they are cooked. So quick and easy, and very healthy, full of protein and fibre. Great as part as a meze or as healthy snack for kids and adults alike. Serve with our Sweet Original Chilli Jam and hummus to dip.
We could not have a page about balls and not mention our favourite meat free alternative; Jerk Falafel. Made with chickpeas, onion, green herbs and our Jamaican Jerk Dry Spice rub.
See our Jerk Falafel Burgers for the full recipe on our Meat Free page.
Oh Balls to it