Greek meatballs

Greek meatballs, also know as “Keftedes me saltsa domata” are a delicious recipe, extremely popular all over Greece, that I first tasted in the village of Kyparissia. Made of lamb, Greek meatballs can be served as a main course, together with a fresh salad and some mashed potatoes, or as an appetizer, possibly with some fresh tzatziki, a yummy yogurt, garlic and cucumber dip typical of Greek cuisine. They taste best served at room temperature (even ‘tho you can warm them up as well) and make for wonderful leftovers. If you don’t like lamb that much, then you could try using some other meat, like beef or even chicken. These quick and tasty Greek meatballs will delight both kids and adults alike, plus they don’t have many fats so you can eat as many as you like (I’ll be happy with let’s say 10 of them…). Like we said before, serve them with salad, mashed potatoes, tzatziki but also with rgilled veggies or baked potatoes as well, and some Greek pita, you can’t miss that! If you love meatballs and you’re looking for new recipes, this one wont disappoint you, I guarantee!

INGREDIENTS FOR THE MEATBALLSgreek meatballs
1 pound ground lamb, or 20-percent fat ground beef
1 cup cooked and cooled couscous
3 scallions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 egg, at room temperature, beaten
1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons dried mint
1 1/2 tablespoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

INGREDIENTS FOR THE SAUCE
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 (25-ounce) jar marinara sauce
2 cinnamon sticks
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

DIRECTIONS
Let’s start by preparing the meatballs: in a large bowl, mix together the lamb, couscous, scallions, garlic, egg, parsley, olive oil, mint, oregano, salt, cumin, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper. Form the mixture into 15 to 16 (2-inch diameter) meatballs.

Time for the sauce, now. Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the meatballs and cook until brown on all sides, about 6 minutes. Add the marinara sauce, cinnamon sticks, and ground cinnamon. Bring the sauce to a boil and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook, turning occasionally, until the meatballs are cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes. Discard the cinnamon sticks. Transfer greek meatballs and sauce to a large bowl and serve.

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