One of my favorite comfort dishes in Morocco is this stew of kefta (meat) balls served in a rich cinnamon-flavored tomato sauce, in which eggs are poached in the final few minutes of cooking. The meat, eggs, and sauce should be served together in a shallow pan such as a tagine, cazuela, or iron skillet.–Paula Wolfert
LC Forks At The Ready Note
Served straight from the pan, with hunks of bread? Now that’s the kind of rustic we like. One word of caution: Eating this way makes it terribly difficult to judge portion sizes. You may have to eat defensively to make sure you get your fair share. Forks at the ready, folks.
Meatball-Tomato-and-Egg Tagine Recipe
- Quick Glance
- 35 M
- 1 H, 20 M
- Serves 6
- For the meatballs
- 1 pound ground lamb or beef
- 1 small onion, grated
- 2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- 1 tablespoon cilantro, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 2 pinches cayenne
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- For the sauce
- 2 medium onions, chopped
- 2 pounds tomatoes, chopped, or one 2-pound can organic chopped tomatoes
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- 1 teaspoon finely ground pepper
- 6 medium eggs
- Make the meatballs
- 1. Combine the ground meat, grated onion, parsley, cilantro, cumin, cayenne, and salt and pepper. Wet your hands and form the mixture into 1-inch balls.
- 2. Heat the olive oil in a tagine, cazuela, or black iron skillet set over a flame tamer over medium heat. Saute the meatballs in the oil until well browned on all sides. Remove the meatballs from the pan to a dish.
- Make the sauce and assemble the dish
- 3. To the same pan add the chopped onions, tomatoes, garlic, parsley, cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, and pepper. Cook uncovered for 30 minutes, or until the sauce has reduced to a thick gravy.
- 4. Add the meatballs back to sauce and simmer for 10 minutes. Carefully, break the eggs into the sauce and poach them for 5 minutes, or until set. Serve at once, directly from the pan with chunks of dense, crusty bread.