Greek Recipes

Greek and Cypriot recipes

Cumin and Garlic Meatballs in Tomato and Wine Sauce (Cretan)


‘The Mediterranean diet is currently considered by Nutritionists as a modus vivende that endows people with longevity and sound health, with Crete at its epicentre, as supported by research conducted on an international scale.’¬†These cumin-flavoured meatballs may be casseroled or oven-baked with potatoes – here is the oven version.

Cumin and Garlic Meatballs in Tomato and Wine Sauce (Cretan)

Cumin and Garlic Meatballs in Tomato and Wine Sauce (Cretan)


  • 500g minced meat (lamb or beef)
  • 130g bread, soaked in white wine
  • 2 cloves of garlic, grated or crushed
  • 1 heaped tsp of ground cumin
  • 1 small onion, grated
  • half tsp salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 medium egg
  • 1 dessert spoon olive oil
  • Squeeze the bread dry, place in a bowl with all the other ingredients and mix together with your hands. Leave the mixture for half an hour in the fridge then shape into cigar shapes (a good thumb size). Put into a shallow oven dish and add equal amounts of parboiled potatoes, cut into similar sizes.
  • Now take 1 tsp of cumin seeds, half tsp salt, 1 clove of garlic, a small onion, a glass of white wine, half a glass of olive oil and a 400g tin of tomatoes, put all into a liquidiser and liquidise. Taste for salt then half fill the tin with water and add. Liquidise again then pour all over the meatballs and potatoes. Cook at Gas Mark 6, 180C for about an hour, checking after 30 minutes.
  • Serve with shredded white cabbage, carrot salad and lots of fresh bread.

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