The Daring Cooks June Challenge: Mutton Meatballs With Apricots
Long long ago in mid May, the Daring Cooks posted there June Challenge on Meatballs from around the world. Meatballs being a family favorite,I wasted no time in making them. In fact I made 2 types of meatballs.
They were made and devoured the first weekend after the challenge was posted and amidst all other things never mentioned. Not on the Daring Cooks internal forum nor here when the “day” we can go public with our challenge.So, while it’s still June I must correct this oversight.
One of my friends mom had made these Turkey meatballs stuffed with apricot and light spiced gravy a few summers ago. They were really awesome. Juicy, flavorful with the sweetness from the hidden apricot. Spices from the northern state of Kashmir – cardamom, saffron and cinnamon. Or so, I recalled of that dinner.
When the challenge was posted, I decided to use spices common to the northern state of Kashmir and extend that to the flavors of Silk Route. Ingredients sourced and recipe built from a variety of sources – memory of that turkey meatball, lingering taste of kafta kebab and shammi kebab.
Here I had a recipe that was great on paper.When I actually made it, it turned out a bit dry and not so juicy. An egg or two should help with that problem. I was hasty and added the kebab to the gravy before they achieved their golden – brown color. Cooking them in gravy instead of adding at the last-minute to get the flavors to meld was another rookie mistake. Here is a modified recipe that I am sure would work. I just need another free weekend to re-try this.
Mutton Meatballs With Apricots Recipe
- 10 – 15 dried apricots soaked in water for an hour, seed removed
- 1 lb Mutton or Turkey mince ( use ground and mix of dark and light meat to make juicy meatballs)
- 1 red onion finely chopped
- 1 green chili finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 tablespoon garam masala
- 1 tablespoon coriander powder
- 3- 4 cardamom pods , shelled and seeds powdered
- A pinch of saffron (optional)
- 3 -4 cloves of garlic finely minced
- 1 inch ginger root, grated
- 1 egg
- Salt to taste
- 3 tablespoon oil for frying
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 2 garlic cloves finely diced
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 inch cinnamon stick
- 1/2 teaspoon chilli powder
- 1/2 Red Onion finely diced
- 1 tablespoon yogurt
- Salt to taste
1. Mix all the ingredients listed except the oil and mix well. Adjust seasonings per taste.
2. Form the meatballs, stuffing an apricot in the center of each. Set aside.
3.Heat oil and fry the meatballs on medium-low flame till golden brown. Set aside.
1.Heat oil. Add spices once the oil is hot but not smoking. Add onions and fry till cooked through. Add yogurt and let onions cook in this yogurt base.
2. Crumble a meatball in the crazy and cook through so that the gravy thickens.
3. Add salt and adjust seasonings to taste.
1. Add the meatballs to the gravy and cook together for few minutes till heated through.
2. Serve warm with rice or rotis.