North African Meatballs with Date Couscous
Week of 12/02/19 to 12/06/2019 Please note all recipes at the PJCC and our Mini Programs are vegetarian. Ingredients subject to change based on availability and teacher’s discretion.
Servings Prep Time
Yields4 servings Prep25 minutes
Cook Time
Cook45 minutes
Servings Prep Time
Yields4 servings Prep25 minutes
Cook Time
Cook45 minutes
North African Sauce
  • 2tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 small oniondiced
  • 2cloves garlicchopped
  • 1 lemonzested
  • 1/2cup pitted and chopped briny olives
  • 1/2cup white wine
  • 1/4cup chicken stock or broth
  • 114-ounce can crushed or diced tomatoes
  • 1teaspoon light brown sugar
  • 1/2teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
  • pinch ground cinnamon
  • dash Salt
  • pinch black pepper
  • 1 egg
  • 2tablespoons Tomato Paste
  • 3tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 1teaspoon ground cumin
  • pinch ground cinnamon
  • 3/4pound ground beef
  • 1/3cup finely ground rolled oats or fine bread crumbs
  • pinch black pepper
  • 3 to 4tablespoons vegetable oilfor cooking
  • 4tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
Couscous with Dried Dates
  • 1cup water
  • 1cup chicken stock or broth
  • 1tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4cup finely chopped dried dates
  • 1cup quick-cooking couscous
  • dash Salt
  • pinch black pepper
To Make North African Sauce
  1. In a large saucepan heat the olive oil over medium heat and saute the onion and garlic until soft but not brown, about 3 minutes. Add the lemon zest and olives and cook for 1 more minute. Add the white wine, deglaze the pan, and let it reduce for a 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the stock, canned tomatoes, sugar, red pepper flakes, and cinnamon, and simmer to blend flavors, about 7 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
To Make Meatballs
  1. In a medium bowl, add the egg and tomato paste and stir until smooth. Add the cilantro, ginger, cumin, and cinnamon and mix until well blended. Stir in the ground beef and oats, season with salt and pepper, to taste, and combine gently after each addition. Do not overmix. Rolling with your hands, make about 32 meatballs, about 1-inch in diameter.
  2. In a large saute pan, heat 3 tablespoons vegetable oil over medium heat, and brown the meatballs in batches until golden on all sides. Add more oil, as needed. Transfer the meatballs to the pan with the sauce and let simmer for 20 minutes. Sprinkle with fresh parsley and serve over the Couscous with Dried Dates.
To Make Couscous with Dried Dates
  1. Bring the water, stock, and oil to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the dates followed by the couscous. Cover the pan tightly with a lid, remove from the heat, and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  1. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve.