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Greek Turkey Meatballs

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Greek meatballs, otherwise known as Keftedes are traditionally made with lamb or beef and make a delicious appetizer with some tzatziki (cucumber yogurt sauce) for dipping. These meatballs have been lightened using turkey instead along with a secret ingredient... zucchini. Don't tell your kids!

Tzatziki is a classic Greek cucumber yogurt sauce or dip. It is served as a condiment on gyros, fish and souvlakis, and other Greek dishes or it is served as a dip with pita wedges.

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Ingredients

  • For Meatballs:
  • 1.25 lbs 93% lean ground turkey
  • 1 cup zucchini, grated and liquid squeezed out
  • 2 sliced whole wheat bread (I used Weight Watchers)
  • 1/4 cup seasoned whole wheat breadcrumbs
  • 1 large egg
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, grated
  • 1/4 red onion, grated
  • 2 tbsp fresh oregano, chopped (less if using dry)
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh spearmint, chopped
  • kosher salt and fresh pepper
  • 1 about 1 tsp worth of olive oil cooking spray (I use my Misto)
  • For Tzatziki sauce (Greek cucumber yogurt sauce or dip):
  • 8 oz fat free greek yogurt (I used Fage)
  • 1 small cucumber, peeled and seeded (1 cup grated and drained)
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp fresh dill, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh chives, chopped
  • kosher salt and fresh pepper

Details

Preparation

Step 1

For Meatballs:
Wet bread with water, squeezing excess out. Tear into small pieces and place in a large bowl. Combine with turkey, egg, zucchini, breadcrumbs, garlic, onion, mint, parsley, oregano, salt and pepper.


Using a 1/4 cup measure, form each meatball 1/4 cup in size. For best results, refrigerate before cooking to help hold their shape.

In a pan: spray olive oil in a large nonstick frying pan and cook over low heat.

On the grill: clean grill well before cooking and spray grate with oil. Cook on low until cooked through. Makes about 17 meatballs.



For Tzatziki sauce (Greek cucumber yogurt sauce or dip):
Strain the yogurt using a metal strainer or a coffee filter for a few hours to remove as much liquid as possible. Set aside.

Scoop seeds out of the cucumber with a small spoon. Place cucumber in a mini food processor or grate with a box cheese grater. Drain the liquid from the cucumber in a metal strainer and sprinkle with a little salt (this helps release the liquid). You may want to use the back of a spoon to help squeeze out any excess liquid.

Combine strained cucumber, garlic, yogurt, salt, pepper, lemon juice, dill, chives and refrigerate for a few hours before serving.

Makes about 2 cups. Store in refrigerator for about a week.

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