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Moroccan Meatballs with Lemon Pepper Pasta


This meatball and sauce have a unique flavor, and, yes, you distinctly know they’re not Italian~~the harissa and use of pineapples create something that immediately tells your palate that you’re happy! You can serve these meatballs with your choice of pasta as you see I’ve done here w/angle hair pasta and with ravioli that I just happened to have on hand, too! These meatballs would make a mean sandwich, too!

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  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons shallots, minced
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 5 tablespoons concentrated tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup pureed Dole pineapple (drained chunks)
  • 1 jar (24 ounce) jar Tomato & Herb Pasta Sauce
  • Ally Note~~You can substitute a really good brand of canned (28 oz.) crushed tomatoes + 1 tablespoon harissa, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, 1 teaspoon red chili flakes, 1 tsp sea salt, 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • Pasta:
  • 16 ounces packaged pasta (your choice)
  • 1/4 cup cooked sauce mixture
  • 2 packed cups chopped arugula (chop in small size pieces)
  • Garnish:
  • Microgreens
  • Preserved lemon very thin sliver slices
  • Finishing sea salt


Adapted from


Step 1


In a large mixing bowl, combine the meats/pepperoni and blend together with your hands. Sprinkle on harissa, salt and pepper and work into meat blending well. Add the ingredients eggs, yogurt and pineapple and blend together well. Add the bread crumbs, parsley and lemon zest and blend well.

Using a spring scoop (small—not ice cream size), portion out about 18 dollops, roll into meatballs placing on a parchment-paper lined cookie sheet.

In a heavy skillet (about 10-12”) heat the canola oil on medium high. Place 9 meatballs in and brown on all sides. Using tongs, gently remove and place on the parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Repeat with the remaining meatballs. Bake in a preheated 400 oven about 9-12 minutes. When done remove.

Meatballs will be added to sauce, coated, covered with a lid, and simmered on low for about 30 minutes. (Note: Be sure to use the rubber spatula to scrape all the good stuff off the parchment paper and into the sauce.)


In a 10-12” heavy skillet on medium heat, melt butter and add olive oil. Add shallots and garlic and sauté until translucent. Add wine and let it sizzle/cook about 5 minutes burning off some of the alcohol. Add the concentrated tomato paste and whisk together well. Add the pineapple and blend in. Let this simmer about 3 minutes.

Reduce heat to medium low and add basting sauce and blend well. Let this simmer on low for about 20 minutes stirring occasionally. Add meatballs and coat with sauce. Cover with a lid and let simmer on low until ready to serve.


Choose any pasta you like & cook according to package directions~~if you can’t find lemon pepper pasta, then make your own~~after you’re cooked the pasta al dente, just squeeze on the juice of 1/2 lemon and 1/2 tsp of freshly ground cracked pepper. Toss and blend, the coat the noodles with some of the sauce. Adding the chopped arugula gives the pasta a prissy flair!

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