This is an amazing filling dish. I was unsure how the eggplant would taste but it came out very well. The meat balls have a kick and are tasty. They are not a hot/spicy …but more of a sweet spicy. We cut the recipe in half and we still had enough for left overs. I especially loved all the vegetables in this dish.
Source: The New Book of Middle Eastern food, by Claudia Roden
Meatballs with Eggplant Sauce
4 eggplants, about 2 pounds total
1 1/2 pounds ground lamb or beef
2 eggs, lightly beaten
3 tablespoons dry fine white breadcrumbs
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
3/4 teaspoon ground allspice
salt and pepper
Sunflower or vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 large beefsteak tomato, peeled and finely chopped
Roast, peel, and mash the eggplants as described on page 63.
For the meatballs, put the ground meat, eggs, and breadcrumbs in a bowl with the cumin, all spice, salt, and pepper and knead with your hands to a soft paste. Or blend in the food processor. Shape the mixture into small balls and fry in shallow oil over medium heat, turning them until they are colored all over. Remove, and drain on paper towels.
In another large frying pan, fry the onion in 3 tablespoons oil until soft and golden. Add the garlic and stir until it begins to color, then add the tomato, salt, and pepper and cook for a few minutes, until reduced. Add the mashed egg-plants, season again with salt and pepper, and cook gently, stirring, for about 8 minutes, until much of the liquid has disappeared. Drop in the meatballs and simmer for 5-10 minutes.