Manousheh Meatballs

Manousheh Meatballs

Updated Feb, 9th 2013

I finally got around to making these.  Sorry for the bad shots, I'm no photographer but I tried to document as much as I could.

In Lebanon we have something called a manousheh, which consists of zaatar (thyme) mixed with sumac, sesame seeds, salt and olive oil to form a paste.  Once you have the zaatar you spread it on a flattened piece of dough and stick it in the oven to get a manousheh.  Then you tend to eat it with Labne (strained yogurt) on the side because zaatar tends to be pretty dry.  I wanted to experiment with this, and I ended up with something a little too much like a falafel but made from meat.  I wasn't personally impressed, I thought the labne would give it a more sour taste (I guess I should have put a bit more) but the result was still pretty good.  I just couldn't compare it to the standard meatballs and sauce that I made following Dan's recipe... Still though I recommend giving it a try, the zaatar gave it an interesting flavor.

Ingredients:

  • 1lb Ground Beef Chuck
  • 1/2 cup Pita bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup Zaatar mix (purchased ready, so I didn't have to make it myself, but its Thyme, Sumac, Sesame Seeds, and Salt)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 healthy tablespoons of Labne (strained yogurt)

To make the bread, I just used bread flour.  The bread is great I suggest anyone try it, 3.5 cups bread flour, 2 tspns salt. Put 1 and 1/4 cups of warm water with 1 tspn active dry yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar until active and then add a tbspn vegetable oil and mix with the flour and salt.  Once risen, separate into dough balls.

Then flatten

Then bake

And this is what it looks like when its ready.

Now the meat!  Once the dough was ready I cut it up for the breadcrumbs and then added all the ingredients together.

Then separated them into balls (1oz)

Then roast

And finally, EAT!! Yum :)

I was not very hungry by the time I was done, I munched on a lot of bread haha... so I was only able to eat 6 meatballs, I separate them into 2 sandwiches and ate one with yogurt and the other with hummus.  I preferred the hummus, but they were both great.  So thats mine, hope you guys enjoyed the process!

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