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Debi's Greek Meatballs

These sort-of-Greek meatballs are very good and easy to make, inspired by a Rachel Ray recipe. They're good plain or with a yogurt-based cucumber sauce, which I plan to make the next time I have these! Directions for RR's sauce are included although I haven't made it yet.

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Servings: 6

Prep Time: 00:30

Cook Time: 00:15

Meatballs:

1 pound ground lamb (you can use all beef or all lamb.)

2 pounds ground beef

1 cup bread crumbs (i used panko because that's what i had; you can also just use two slices of bread made into crumbs.)

1/2 cup milk

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. cumin

2 pinches of cinnamon (i don't know how much flavor this really added, but that's what the recipe said.)

1/2 Onion or a couple of shallots, finely diced

2 - 3 Cloves of garlic, pressed

1 egg

2 tablespoons olive oil

Optional Cucumber Sauce:

1 Small cucumber

2 cups greek yogurt (or let two and a half cups of regular yogurt drain in a paper towel - lined strainer over a bowl for an hour)

1 additional clove of garlic

1/4 cup fresh dill

1 tablespoon lemon juice

Preparation

1If you're making the cucumber sauce, get that started by draining the yogurt, if you're doing that, and grating the cucumber and then pressing it between paper towels to get out the excess moisture. Mix the yogurt and cucumber with the lemon juice, garlic and dill and refrigerate until serving time.

2Pour the milk over the bread or breadcrumbs and let it absorb, then mix in everything else but the meat. Then mix together your two meats and add in the other ingredients. You want to make it as easy as possible to get everything evenly combined. I think I ended up with some unmixed blobs of beef because I didn't take my own advice, but they were good anyway. Then form into small-to-medium meatballs; this recipe made about 60.

3Space them an inch or so apart on rimmed baking sheets that have been coated with a couple tablespoons of olive oil. Rachel has you bake these poor little things at 450 degrees! Ridiculous! 375 is plenty hot enough, and since I have a convection oven I set it at 375 for multi-rack baking, which automatically lowers the temp to 350. Use your trusty instant-read thermometer to check that they've reached 160 degrees, which will take 12-15 minutes. I then dumped mine into a crockpot set on low to keep them warm, but honestly--they disappeared so fast I might as well not have bothered. Serve plain or with the yogurt sauce.

Additional Notes

These would be good with noodles, rice or pita bread.

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