Ras el Hanout Meatballs

Initially, these Ras el Hanout Meatballs were headed for the Ebook. In the end, choosing which recipes to include came down to space. It seems a common problem when publishing a cookbook. Over catering? So here they are then. For meatball lovers, because there are many of us. Offer them with flatbreads  or heavily herbed bulgur wheat and something cool and crunchy, like say maybe, a cucumber chutney or radish pickle. I love the gingery warmth and gentle heat of this sauce. It’s spicy, but not overly so.

Ras el Hanout Meatballs

As with most recipes in my cookbooks and here on the blog, there’ll most likely be a wild card ingredient to keep things interesting. Here, I’ve added a satiny tahini sauce and fresh cucumber chutney. Both are completely unnecessary but so good. It shouldn’t be the decider as to whether or not you make the dish though. If you are keen on the cucumber accompaniment, here’s the recipe I use.

A quick word on Ras el Hanout : An exotic spice blend that typifies Moroccan cuisine. A secret concoction of spices made up with a ‘pinch off the top’ of the spice merchant’s best spices. More flavourful than hot. I’ve used the Ras el Hanout spice from the Ebook, but you can find this North African spice at most retailers too. I know Woolworths stocks it. Failing that, harissa paste will do just as well.

Ras el Hanout Spice

Homemade Ras el Hanout Spice (Recipe from the Beautiful Home Food)

Tahini Sauce

Satiny Tahini Sauce (Recipe from Beautiful Home Food)


Ras el Hanout Meatballs

Serves 4

For the meatballs

  • 500g lean beef mince
    ¾ cup fresh breadcrumbs
    1 egg
    10ml (2 teaspoons) Ras el Hanout
    a handful flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
    2 spring onions, thinly sliced
    ¾ teaspoon fine salt
    freshly ground black pepper


  • 30ml (2 tablespoons) olive oil
    1 onion, finely diced
    1 garlic clove, minced
    a thumb-sized knob of ginger, grated
    10ml (2 teaspoons) Ras el Hanout spice rub
    5ml (1 teaspoon) ground coriander
    5ml (1 teaspoon) cumin seeds
    5ml (1 teaspoon) smoked paprika
    zest of 1 lemon
    30ml (2 tablespoons) tomato paste
    2 x 400g tinned chopped tomatoes
    5ml (1 teaspoon) brown sugar
    2 tablespoons currants
    250ml (1 cup) chicken stock
    400g tin chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  1. Place all the ingredients for the meatballs in a large bowl and mix together by hand. Roll into 22 evenly sized balls. Chill for 30 minutes to firm up. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in 30cm Le Creuset Buffet Casserole. Over a medium high heat, brown the meatballs on all sides. Remove from the casserole and set aside.
  2. Lower the heat to medium, adding another tablespoon of olive oil along with the onions. Sauté until soft, about 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and ginger and cook for another minute. Add all the aromatics and lemon zest. Dry fry the spices until fragrant, a minute is ample. Stir in the tomato paste, chopped tomatoes, sugar, currants and stock. Season lightly with salt and black pepper. Return the meatballs to the pan and simmer until the sauce is reduced and the meat cooked through, about 25-30 minutes. Add the chickpeas and heat through.


The Beautiful Home Food Ebook


Top 3 Meatball favourites on the blog:

Creamy Swedish meatballs with mushrooms

Ottolenghi’s Ricotta and oregano meatballs

Spanish meatballs



2 Comments. Leave new

  • Teresa Biskupek
    29 August 2020 5:17 am

    made these for dinner but used lamb instead of beef. They were excellent. also made flatbread to mop up the juices. Leftovers tonight with some couscous. they will go into my rotation list and I plan to make them for friends, when they can visit again.

  • Sounds like a Middle Eastern feast Teresa. Flatbread is definitely the answer when faced with this delicious sauce. I hope your friends love them too!

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