Lamb, pork or beef?

A recipe I was following the other day asked for ground lamb.

Now I don't know about you, but where I live ground lamb isn't typically stocked in stores. Actually, lamb of any stripe is difficult to find.

So then the question became should I use ground beef or ground pork. I didn't even bother to contemplate ground chicken or turkey. Ickers!

What I would have liked to do would have been to have a mix of 75% pork and 25% beef but given that the packages of ground pork were 1 pound each, I would have had to make enough to feed an army. I could have bought a pound of pork and a pound of beef and just used a quarter of the beef but that wouldn't have been quite enough.

In the end I went with just using 2 packs of pork and nixing the beef entirely. Sorry cows! Or like actress Clara Peller used to say in those Wendy's commercials, Where's the beef?

So that's what you see over there on the left. Just ground up piggies.

Quite a bit of fat in them. At the beginning I could only put a little over half of the meatballs in the pan. Yet before I moved any of the cooked meatballs over to the sauce they had shrunk enough so that the rest of the meatballs could fit.

That was fine though. I used all that melted fat to saute the onions, shallots, and garlic and then later added them to the sauce too.

I was using a North African recipe so the spicing was heavy on cumin and allspice with a healthy wallop of cinnamon and ground coriander seeds too.

It turned out pretty good but the pasta was rather bland. In my hurry to finish the food at the end, I totally spaced and forgot to salt the pasta water. The sauce and meatballs were quite good but I was taking a lot more care early in the process when I wasn't hungry yet.

Yeah, I know. Rookie mistake.


GA Girl said…
Good, healthy spices. Bad, bad pork fat. Sounds delicious, though.
srp said…
I think you can ask for ground lamb, but I bet it has the same amount of fat as pork... the fat is just a bit different though. My grandmother always loved lamb to "grease up her insides". Please remember, finishing high school was not in the cards for her and she did eventually develop Alzheimer's. But that is what she thought.
kenju said…
I'd be very careful of all that fat, Dave. My mom ate like that and died of gallbladder disease.
Scarlet said…
Oh yum Dave!! They look delicious!!!! You have inspired me!

Lamb is pretty difficult to come by here too... I always gorge myself on Lamb when I'm in Australia or NZ to make up for it!!!

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