Ground Lamb Meatballs with Loquats
Loquats grow all over Turkey; late May is the height of the season.
Yield: serves 4-8
- 3⁄4 lb. lean ground lamb or beef
- 1⁄4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
- 3⁄4 tsp. baharat kariºimi
- Pinch cayenne
- 2 tsp. flour
- 2 tbsp. soda water
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 10 loquats, fresh or canned
- Vegetable oil
- 1⁄2 tsp. pomegranate molasses, diluted in 2/3 cup water
- 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
- 2 tbsp. chopped scallions
- Mix together lamb, 3 tbsp. parsley, garlic, baharat, cayenne, flour, and soda water in a medium bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then form into 16 meatballs.
- If using fresh loquats, trim ends, halve each, and remove pits and inner membrane. If using canned, drain, then halve.
- Preheat broiler. Alternate loquats with meatballs on 4 long metal or wood skewers (soak wood skewers for 1⁄2 hour in water before using), then brush lightly with oil. Place skewers on a baking sheet and broil, turning several times, until meat is browned all over, about 8 minutes. (Alternately, grill over a charcoal fire.)
- Once meat is browned, slide meat and loquats off skewers and into a nonstick skillet. Add diluted pomegranate molasses and lemon juice. Cover and simmer over medium-low heat until sauce has thickened and coats meat well, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and serve garnished with scallions and remaining 1 tbsp. parsley.