Meatballs don’t need breadcrumbs or eggs. It’s official. I have made two of Ottolenghi’s versions and neither one required breadcrumbs as a filler. His lamb kofta recipe that I wrote up here relies on crushed pine nuts to hold them together. I recently made his turkey meatballs with grated zucchini and green onions and substituted the three eggs for flax seed with no issues. (One tablespoon of ground flaxseed with about 2 tablespoons of water equals one egg).
Breadcrumbs and eggs aside, these flavorful meatballs are awesome. And any recipe that simply says, ‘combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl’ immediately earns points in my book. Since I wasn’t making the accompanying yogurt sauce (no substitute found for that yet!), I just added the sumac into the turkey mixture so I wouldn’t miss out on that flavor. All that’s left to do after mixing together all the ingredients is to pan sear them and throw them in the oven for 8 minutes.
I doubled the recipe as these little patties travel well and make for great lunches for a few days. They are so packed with flavor that you can serve them with a simple grain and sautéed vegetable to give your taste buds a rest between bites.