Kefta and Tzatziki

I think this was one of my favorite meals that I’ve made in awhile!  I absolutely love tzatziki.  I could eat it out of the bowl, but normally I try to refrain from that because it looks a little weird to be scooping it out with a spoon.  But what makes it even better is when you make homemade pita bread and can pull a hot, soft pita round out of the oven and dip it in tzatziki….oh man, I’m in heaven!    Look for that pita bread recipe to come soon on the blog as well, because whoever said man can live on bread alone-I think meant pita bread!  Each item is pretty easy to make but is still pretty time consuming.  I made the kefta mix and tzatziki sauce the day before and then the pita bread and actual meatballs the next night.  When you have time to make the meal like that and leisurely enjoy a glass of wine then you can’t not enjoy this meal…I mean as I’m typing I want to go eat some leftovers, but will try to resist seeing how I’m going out to dinner in an hour but that should tell you how good it is!.

Kefta

  • 2 slices firm white sandwich bread (made into fresh bread crumbs)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh parsley leaves
  • 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 lb ground lamb
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted and finely chopped

Preheat oven to 450.  Pulse onion and herbs in a food processor until finely chopped, then add to bread along with lamb, salt, spices, and pine nuts. Mix with your hands until well blended. Form lamb mixture into balls.  Bake meatballs about 25 mins.

Tzatziki

  • 14 ounces Greek yogurt
  • 1 hothouse cucumber, unpeeled and seeded
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh dill
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Place the yogurt in a medium bowl. Grate the cucumber on a box grater or in your food processor, and squeeze the grated cucumber with your hand to remove some of the liquid.  Add it to the yogurt along with the sour cream, lemon juice, vinegar, dill, garlic, salt and pepper and stir. Serve with pita and kefta.

*both recipes I found on smittenkitchen.com however they were not served together. I also decided to bake my kefta instead of grill it because I find that meatballs can tend to break apart if cooked otherwise.

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