Cooking with Willow Creek: Lamb Meatballs with Herbed Yoghurt & Toasted Pitas

Words: Crush

Willow creek olive oilWe absolutely love Middle Eastern flavours and this bright and flavourful style of cuisine has been a hot food trend of late. We get cooking with Willow Creek olive oils to create this delicious dish of Lamb Meatballs with toasted pitas, hummus and herbed yoghurt. Willow Creek’s award-winning olive oil range that sets the standard for quality.

Lamb Meatballswillow creek olive oilsIn this recipe, we’re featuring their Coriander Flavoured Olive Oil in the meatballs and yoghurt dipping sauce. We also shallow fry the meatballs in their Garlic Flavoured Olive Oil to impart that quintessential Middle Eastern flavour punch.

Get to know Willow Creek Flavoured Oils

Coriander is a herb that’s commonly used to flavour international dishes. It comes from the Coriandrum sativum plant and is related to parsley, carrots, and celery. With the Willow Creek Coriander Flavoured Olive Oil, Willow Creek wanted to highlight the amazing flavour coriander has to offer.

Infused in quality delicate Willow Creek Extra Virgin Olive Oil, this product is amazing for meat, fish and light salad dishes.

This refreshing Coriander Flavoured olive oil can also be used to enhance Thai curries and Asian noodle dishes. The herbaceous Coriander paired with the pungent Garlic promises a dish that is not only flavourful but also packed with all the goodness Extra Virgin Olive Oil has to offer.

Make this Recipe

Lamb Meatballs with Mint & Coriander Yoghurt, Hummus & Toasted Pita

This dish is great for serving a group or just a delicious meal for the family. We love the interactive nature of it; pop a big serving platter down on the table and let everyone scoop up hummus and herby yoghurt to top their meatballs and pita. The toasted pitas are also perfect for mopping up that delicious extra virgin olive oil.

Serves: 4-6
Difficulty: easy
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes

Lamb Meatballs 

1kg lamb mince, cold
1 egg
½ C (125 ml) panko crumbs
1 small red onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tsp (10 ml) ground cumin
2 tsp (10 ml) ground coriander
1 tsp (5 ml) chilli flakes
a handful of flat-leaf parsley, chopped
2 Tbsp (30 ml) dried oregano
2 Tbsp (30 ml) Willow Creek Coriander Flavoured Oil
zest of 1 lemon
sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Willow Creek Garlic Flavoured Oil for shallow frying

Herbed Yoghurt

1 C (250 ml) double cream yoghurt
a small handful of fresh mint
1 garlic clove, finely chopped/grated
1 Tbsp (15 ml) Willow Creek Coriander Flavoured Oil
juice and zest of 1 small lemon
sea salt and freshly ground pepper

To Serve

1 x 250g tub of hummus
1 packet of pitas, toasted
Willow Creek Coriander Flavoured Oil
50 g pine nuts, toasted
pickled red onions to garnish (optional) See an easy recipe here.
fresh coriander and mint, if preferred

Lamb Meatballs 

For the meatballs, mix all of the ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. Use your hands work the ingredients through the meat evenly but don’t overwork the meat.

Measure out 75 g portions of the mixture and shape into balls. Again, handle the meat as little as possible and don’t compact the balls too tightly. Repeat the process until all the meatballs are formed. Put the meatballs into the fridge to chill while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

When you are ready to cook…

Preheat the oven to 180 ºC. Heat a splash of Willow Creek Garlic Flavoured Oil for shallow frying in a large cast-iron pan or frying pan. Place half of the meatballs into the pan but do not overcrowd the pan. Fry on each side until golden brown. Remove the meatballs from the pan and place then onto a baking tray.

Fry the second batch of meatballs and then add them to the baking tray. Place the meatballs into the oven for 8-10 minutes. You want them cooked until they are just barely pink inside. Test one meatball after 8 minutes. Remove the meatballs from the oven when cooked and allow to rest for a few minutes.

Herbed Yoghurt

For the yoghurt, mix the ingredients together and then season with salt and pepper. Adjust the seasoning and lemon juice to taste.

Toast the pine nuts in a dry frying pan over medium heat until golden.

To Serve

Toast the pita bread (on a baking tray in the oven, or even in your toaster) and serve on a family-style platter with the lamb meatballs, yoghurt and hummus. Garnish with a healthy drizzle of Willow Creek Coriander Flavoured Oil, toasted pinenuts, fresh herbs and pickled onions.

Love this recipe? See how we cook a sumptuous dinner party using the Willow Creek Olive Oil range.

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