Lamb and Anchovy Meatballs Recipe

45 minutes


Tomato sauce

  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 800g of tinned chopped tomatoes
  • 125ml of white wine
  • 250ml of chicken stock
  • 2 bay leaves, torn
  • 1 tbsp of tomato purée


  • 400g of lamb mince
  • 1 slice of white bread, crusts removed
  • 3 tbsp of milk
  • 5 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 8 anchovy fillets, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp of fennel seeds, toasted in a dry pan
  • 1 lemon, zested

To serve

  • parsley, chopped
  • spaghetti, or flatbreads


Make the sauce by softening the onion in the olive oil until soft but not coloured. Add the chilli flakes and tomato purée and cook, stirring for a minute or so
Add the white wine and let it bubble. Add the chicken stock, tinned tomatoes, bay leaves and some salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and leave to cook with the lid on (leave a small gap) for 20 minutes. Check the seasoning
Make the meatballs by combining the bread with the milk and mashing to a paste with a fork
Combine this with the minced lamb, fennel seeds, garlic, anchovies and lemon zest. Check the seasoning by frying a small amount in a frying pan. You probably won’t need any salt as the anchovies are salty
Form into 20 golf ball-sized meatballs
Colour the meatballs in a frying pan until browned (but not cooked through). Add to the sauce and simmer gently for 5 minutes
Serve with spaghetti or flatbreads, scattered with the chopped parsley