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Ottolenghi's Turkey-Zucchini Meatballs with Tzatziki Sauce and Sumac

Ottolenghi's Turkey-Zucchini Meatballs with Tzatziki Sauce and Sumac
  • Meal

    Main Dish

  • Cusine


1 1/4 lbs. freshly ground turkey

2 small zucchini, grated and water pressed out

3 green onions, sliced

small handful coarsely chopped fresh mint

small handful coarsely chopped fresh cilantro

2 tsp. crushed or minced garlic

1 tsp. ground cumin

1 tsp. Vege-Sal 

fresh-ground black pepper to taste

1 tsp. Aleppo Pepper 

1 egg

Tzatziki Sauce, for serving

Sumac, for serving


Make Tzatziki Sauce, if using and let it chill in the fridge for several hours.Preheat broiler and lightly spray a baking rack or baking sheet with non-stick spray.Take meat out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature while you grate the zucchini and chop herbs.Use the grater blade on the food processor to grate the zucchini, or grate by hand.Put grated zucchini between a double layer of paper towels and use something heavy (like a cast iron pan) to press down on it and press the water out.Slice the green onion and coarsely chop the mint and parsley (enough to make about 2 tablespoons each finely chopped mint and parsley.)Change the blade in the food processor to the steel chopping blade, add the herbs and pulse until they’re starting to be finely chopped. (They will chop more with the other ingredients.)Add the grated zucchini and pulse a couple of times until it’s chopped.Then add the garlic, ground cumin, Vege-Sal (or salt), black pepper, Aleppo Pepper (or Cayenne), and egg and pulse just enough times to get the meat mixture combined well.Transfer to a bowl for easier access in forming the meatballs.Use your hands or a Cookie Scoop to form small meatballs, laying them on the baking rack. (I got 20 meatballs, each about 1 1/2 inches across.Broil meatballs about 4-5 inches away from the heat for about 10 minutes, or until the top is getting well-browned. (Even if you have fresh ground turkey, some liquid will ooze out, but ignore it and persevere!)Turn meatballs and broil 10 minutes or a little more on the other side, until meatballs are browned and cooked through. (I used an instant read meat thermometer to make sure the inside of the meatballs had reached 160F/70C.)Serve meatballs hot, with Tzatziki Sauce sprinkled with Sumac if desired.Meatballs will keep in the fridge for several days.They can probably be frozen, but I didn’t manage to keep any around long enough to do that!