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Middle Eastern spiced lamb bites with an easy tzatziki

Sweetly spiced lamb studded with jewels of raisins in each bite, these are small but pack a lot of taste. I keep mine simple and serve them with this easy tzatziki dip and a simple salad, or stuffed into a toasted pitta bread or wrap with loads of fresh herbs.

Time to prepare : 15 minutes

Time to cook : 20 minutes

Total time to make : 35 minutes

Servings : 4


500g lamb mince

1 yellow onion, finely chopped

50g panko (or normal) breadcrumbs

1 egg

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped or minced

50g raisins, roughly chopped

2 tsp ground cumin

2 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp ground cinnamon

Handful of coriander leaves, chopped

Handful of parsley leaves, chopped

2 tbsp olive oil

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Mint leaves, to serve (optional)

Easy Tzatziki

1/2 cucumber

170g Greek yoghurt

1 tbsp olive oil

1 garlic clove, finely chopped or minced

1 tbsp chopped mint leaves


  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C/200°C fan and line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper.

  2. To make the easy tzatziki, slice the cucumber in half lengthways and use a spoon to scrape out and discard the seeds. Grate or finely chop the cucumber and mix with the Greek yoghurt, olive oil, garlic and mint leaves and season with a pinch of salt and pepper.

  3. For the lamb bites, put all of the ingredients, except the olive oil, into a bowl and mix well with your hands. You could use a food processor if you have one, otherwise make sure the ingredients are diced as finely as you can get them, to stop the balls falling apart.

  4. Use a tablespoon to measure out scoops of the mixture and roll in your hands to form 18–20 roughly ping-pong-sized balls.

  5. Arrange the balls on the baking paper and gently flatten into discs with the palm of your hand. Drizzle with the olive oil and bake for 20–25 minutes until browned and cooked through.

  6. Serve alongside the tzatziki, garnish with mint leaves.

Nutritional Information (per serve, ~ 4 balls)

280 calories

10g fat, 80g carbohydrate, 20g protein

Good to know:

  • It's called 'easy' tzatziki because usually the cucumbers are salted first (and left for 30 minutes to absorb excess moisture) then wrung out with a cloth. Here, we deseed the cucumber to remove most of the moisture so we can whip it up instantly.

  • Store extra portions covered in the fridge for up to 3 days or freeze (cooked or uncooked) for up to 3 months.


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