Moroccan Meatballs

Morita chiles are red, fully mature Chipotles. This gives them a unique, medium – hot smokey flavor which is popular in many Southwestern dishes. These can be added to sauces (including Mole) to add smokey flavor and maintain the red color of the sauces. These peppers are about 2-4 inches in length, 1 inch in width, and have a deep brick reddish brown color. The word Chipotle translated to smoked chile. Consider the Chipotle a 6.5 on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the hottest). Scoville heat units 7,000-25,000.

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10 oz beef mince
3 tbsp chopped fresh herbs
1 egg
1.4 oz breadcrumbs
Salt, a pinch of
Pepper, a pinch of
2 tsp cumin seed
½ tsp ground cinnamon
3-4 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves of garlic, mashed
1-2 chiles, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
1 stick of celery, finely chopped
3 bay leaves
1 green bell pepper, roughly chopped
1 red bell pepper, roughly chopped
2x 14 oz tins of peeled plum tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato purée
A large handful of raisins
7 oz chickpeas
1 tbsp honey


Serves 4
To make the meatballs pop the meat, herbs of your choosing, egg, breadcrumbs and seasoning in a large bowl and work thoroughly with both hands. Roll the mixture into 12-14 evenly sized meatballs and place on a floured plate in the fridge. They can be made a few hours in advance or even the night before.
Toast the cumin seeds gently in a pan until they release their aroma. Transfer them to a pestle and mortar and grind them roughly. Put 3 tbsp of olive oil in a pan and begin to fry the cumin together with the cinnamon. Immediately add the celery and onions and cook until translucent. Add the garlic and chilli, before tipping in the bay leaves and peppers. Add the tomatoes and purée and cook for an hour over a gentle heat.

Turn the oven to 160C. Add the raisins, chickpeas and honey to the sauce and set aside. Fry the meatballs in a drizzle of olive oil until browned. Transfer the sauce to a large earthen casserole and place the meatballs evenly into the mixture. Cover with foil and bake for 30-40 minutes. Serve with rice or cous cous.