Spicy Meatballs with Adjika and Yogurt
- 4 red chilies, deseeded
- 4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- ½ celery stick, roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon coriander leaves
- 1 tablespoon basil leaves
- 1 tablespoon dill fronds
- 2 tablespoons walnut oil
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 4 tomatoes, deseeded
- 1 slice white bread, crusts removed
- 6 tablespoons milk
- 250 grams (1 cup) minced pork
- 250 grams (1 cup) minced beef
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 tablespoon barberries
- 1 tablespoon ground sumac
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon ground coriander
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons sea salt
- Olive oil, for frying
- Greek yogurt, to serve
For the adjika
Put all of the ingredients into a food processor and pulse blend to a chunky paste. The flavour will become more rounded and mellow if you make the paste in advance and leave to sit for a while.
For the meatballs
Soak the bread in the milk for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, put all the other ingredients into a large bowl and use your hands to combine everything thoroughly.
Mash together the bread and milk to make a paste, then mix this into the meatball mixture.
Roll into meatballs; I like them golf-ball sized.
Heat a slick of oil in a frying pan and cook the meatballs in batches. Start at a high heat to brown the outside, then lower the temperature until the meat is cooked through.
Serve with the adjika and a generous dollop of yogurt.
About this recipe
Adjika, literally “red salt”, is a spicy and fragrant pepper paste from Abkhazia, a breakaway region of Georgia. You’ll find it completely addictive and you’ll be using it as a condiment for everything, as they do in Abkhazia. It will keep in the fridge for a few days.