Mediterranean food is known for its heart healthy qualities. Plenty of fresh vegetables, less meat, more dairy products especially yogurt and yes, gallons of freshly pressed olive oil… all these marry to give us great meals which is so simple to make yet so delicious and satisfying. We Indians tend to mar our foods by liberal use of spices. Now spices are good, I am not saying they are not good. But everything in proportion is good. I've tasted Indian food that is so hot, thanks to red chili powder.. It simply burns the roof of the mouth. I like moderate use of bay leaf, cinnamon, cloves etc. and very less use of red chili powder. Unfortunately, so many of us think that more the heat in the dish, the better tasting it becomes. So wrong. This is the reason when I invite my Indian friends for dinner, I prefer to make these dishes. That way I don't have to go overboard with the use of oil and spices and the most important thing is, they get impressed! I kill two birds with a stone! That's why I like to experiment with Mediterranean foods. Less spices and fresh ingredients. Made in minutes and palate pleasing.
Greek meatballs are normally made with lamb. Here in North America, this meat is scarce and so hard to find. So I used ground chicken instead. This meal was so filling without that feeling of the food, sitting in your stomach like a rock! And we all know about tzatziki. Just like Indian cucumber raita without the oil tempering!
Greek Meatballs with Tzatziki Sauce
1 lb. ground chicken or turkey
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tbsp dried oregano
Mix everything lightly. Make balls, flatten them and grill on the skillet for about 5-6 minutes per side. Set aside and keep warm.
Prepare Tzatziki sauce by mixing 1 lb of drained regular fat yogurt(you can use Greek yogurt but it's kind of expensive!), 3 crushed garlic cloves, 1/4 cup olive oil, and 1/2 finely cubed cucumber. The sauce is ready. Use it to dip the baked or fried pita chips, day old crusty bread or better, with these meatballs!