Way back in the beginning of time when we were first talking about having our family reunion in Morocco, I bought a Moroccan cookbook: ‘the food of Morocco, a journey for food lovers’. It’s a wonderful cookbook, with beautiful photos…..
When I was actually in Morocco I bought real (I think) Moroccan cookbooks. They’re not big, coffee-table books but small, paperbacks with (I think) authentic recipes.
I bought three…. Two are in French and one in Spanish.
My cookbook collection grows ever more diverse.
Back to the meatballs…..
This was the first Moroccan dish I made out of my first Moroccan cookbook.
It’s still our favorite. These are simply the best meatballs I have ever made – or eaten.
Meatballs with Preserved Lemon
Total time: 75 minutes
- 16oz (500gr) ground beef
- 2 tbs minced shallot
- 1 clove crushed garlic
- 2 tbs dried parsley
- 2 tbs dried bread crumbs
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1 tbs olive oil
- 1 1/2 cups (12oz, 360gr) chicken stock
- 2 tsp oregano
- 2 tbs dried parsley
- 2 tbs fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 preserved lemon, rinsed, pulp removed, chopped and rind cut into strips
- Combine all of the ingredients for the meatballs and mix very well, kneading until it gets almost paste-like. Form into 1 1/2″ (4cm) balls. Set aside.
- In tagine or large skillet, sauté onion in olive oil until tender, 6 – 7 minutes.
- Add paprika, cumin and sauté 1 minute longer.
- Add stock, oregano and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to simmer, add meatballs, keeping them separate, cover and simmer 45 minutes.
- Add parsley, lemon juice and preserved lemon, simmer 2 minutes longer to combine flavors.
- Serve over couscous or rice.
Lest you think we decided on Morocco five years ago and simply moved forward from there I should offer a few more details.
Morocco was greeted with enthusiasm, initially.
Then someone suggested Greece. I’ve not been to Greece so I was happy with that. I bought a Greek cookbook.
The idea was presented that a great way to see Greece was on a cruise. Sounds like fun!
Well, cruises are wonderful, but some people had been to Greece… Why don’t we take a Baltic Cruise?
I’ve always wanted to see St. Petersburg.
Before I could buy a Russian cookbook cruises were out (I forget the reason.)
Northern Europe was mentioned… as was Eastern Europe, Turkey, Egypt, China and a few other places.
Eventually, after four years of ‘on again – off again’ discussions, we came back to Morocco.
Before we left Marrakesh a few locations were tossed out for the next reunion. Nothing serious enough for me to buy cookbooks yet, though.
Have the fun of travel is in the planning.
9 thoughts on “Meatballs with Preserved Lemon, cookbooks & family plans”
These meatballs seem like a perfect counterpoint to the cold front that just rolled into the high desert here.
I do not have access to preserved lemon, do you have a suggestion for an alternate?
Evidently, I don’t either. I tried unsuccessfully to find them after your last recipe with them, but no luck. 🙁
Cuba please !!!
I’ve never made them but stored this recipe. They don’t look that difficult to make if you can’t buy them:
Sounds delicious! I love collecting cookbooks too. I fear I may soon run out of room for them.
Did you enjoy the meatballs? I’m not sure I would keep the lemon slivers that large as I find preserved lemon a bit overpowering. Curious to hear your thoughts.
Dan, they do very well against cold weather….
deebar, well…. you can make your own preserved lemons, …. or add a half of a fresh lemon with a bit of sugar to offset,, maybe 1 tsp or so.
nightsmusic, make some – they keep a really long time… Dan gave us the link = thanks Dan!
Kate – you’ll come, right?
dishinthekitchen, I love the preserved lemon so that’s okay for me,,,but you could sliver them a bit thinner – same flavor for the meatballs.
I have made these many times, they are great and freeze really well! Delicious with bulgur. Do not double unless you are using 2 large pots as the meatballs will likely stick together.
I’ve made then many times, too. They are our favorite and sooo easy. Thanks 😉
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