Wednesday, March 25

Lamb meatballs + Hummus + Spinach "pie"

My in-laws were back a long trip and they came over for lunch over the weekend. Initially, we wanted to order delivery Thai food but in the end, I thought, with proper planning, we should be able to prepare a meal for them. Plus this gives me something to maul over in my free time (yes, I absolutely cannot stand being idle).

While recipe surfing, Amateur Gourmet's Lamb Meatballs on Ottolenghi’s Hummus with Pomegranate Molasses called out to me with a vengeance. 

This recipe was adapted from Ottolenghi’s as I have trouble following recipes to a tee (thus baking is still not a strong suit of mine).

The recipe called for tahini but I had a bottle of Japanese roasted sesame salad dressing sitting in my fridge, begging to be used up and so I heeded its call. Since the dressing is runnier than tahini, I only added about half a cup of it.

I might have taken liberties with the amount of lemon juice and garlic, which resulted in a dip that was sharp, punchy and dip-tastic.

As you can see, I attempted to spoon out the hummus artistically onto the plate but of course, the effort came to naught since I dumped about four dozen meatballs over it. #sadnotsad

As for the lamb meatballs, instead of Aleppo pepper, I used a one teaspoon of grounded cumin seeds because cumin and lamb go together like Ernie and Bert - or something like that. I also left out the pine nuts because well, I didn't think they were essential and they really weren't, I promise.

And of course, I made them ahead, seared them the day before and popped them into the oven for about 10 mins at 350F.

Oh, I didn't have pomegranate molasses so after searing the meatballs, I deglazed the pan (ooo, chef-y term) with 3/4 cup of white wine and scraped up with caramelised bits, creating a sort of sauce for the dish.

I wanted to make something the Munckin could have as well and I remembered how much he loved the spinach dip at California Pizza Kitchen.

The Artichoke Spinach Dip recipe by Brown Eyed Baker was simple enough but I will admit, I messed up the quantities for mayonnaise and sour cream so it was less creamy and more of a spinach "pie." Still very yummy and maybe somewhat healthier.

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