Lamb Meatballs with Gremolata

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 2 hr 5 min (includes soaking and refrigeration time)
  • Active: 35 min
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings
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Ingredients

Lamb Meatballs:

Three 1-inch slices crusty Italian bread, crust removed and cut into cubes

1/2 cup whole milk 

2 small shallots, roughly chopped 

1 clove garlic, roughly chopped 

2 tablespoons dried currants 

2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted 

1 tablespoon fresh parsley, stemmed 

1 teaspoon ground cumin 

1 egg 

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 pound ground lamb (85 percent lean)

1 cup canola oil 

Gremolata:

1 cup roughly chopped fresh parsley

1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh mint

2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted 

2 cloves garlic, chopped 

Zest of 1 lemon plus 1 tablespoon juice 

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil 

Directions

  1. For the lamb meatballs: Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Place the bread in a medium bowl. Pour the milk over the bread and let soak for 10 minutes.
  3. Combine the shallots and garlic in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add the currants, pine nuts and parsley and pulse until finely chopped. Add the cumin, egg, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and pulse until fully incorporated. Add the lamb and the milk-soaked bread, breaking both up into chunks. Pulse until just combined. Scoop out about 1 tablespoon of the mixture and roll it into a ball. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Continue with the remaining lamb mixture. Refrigerate, covered with plastic wrap, for at least 1 hour.
  4. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line another baking sheet with parchment paper.
  5. Heat the canola oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the meatballs and fry on all sides until browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet and bake until fully cooked, 15 to 20 minutes.
  6. For the gremolata: Combine the parsley, mint, pine nuts, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a food processer. Pulse until roughly chopped. While continuing to pulse, add the oil. Season with salt and pepper. Serve on the side with the meatballs.