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Alhambra Reserva 1925

    Meat, Recipes

    Recipe: Chorizo and beef meatballs

    I seem to have been on a bit of a meatball kick recently.  I made a bunch of turkey meatballs and filled my freezer with them, and just as I was beginning to finish off the last batch I was itching to try out another version.  Because it’s more economic to keep your freezer full, right?

    This time round I wanted to make something a little different.  Usually when I make meatballs I add breadcrumbs to make them a little softer, but this time round I wanted to make something that was dense and meaty, with a sauce which was packed full of flavour.  As I tend to freeze most of what I make, I wanted something with some big flavours which would improve with time.


    Spanish beer brand Alhambra were nice enough to send over a case of their beer so I figured I’d use it as inspiration.  If you want to try it yourself, I’ve spotted it on sale in a few places in Brum, most notably Amantia on Bennetts Hill – or check the competition at the end of the post.

    Alhambra Reserva 1925, named after a palace in its home town of Granada, is a Spanish lager with 6.40% abv, making it fairly strong compared to most typical lagers.  It’s best served cold, a sort of bittersweet drink, with plenty of history so I wanted to create a tapas recipe which would use traditional Spanish flavours like smoked paprika in chorizo and sherry.  And so, chorizo and beef meatballs is what happened…

    Chorizo and beef meatballs
    Recipe type: Tapas, Dinner
    Cuisine: Spanish
    Serves: 30 meatballs
    • 500g beef mince, 5% fat
    • 225g chorizo sausage, deskinned
    • 1 red onion
    • salt and pepper
    • 3 garlic cloves
    • 500g passata
    • 500g passata with onion and garlic
    • 3tbsp sherry vinegar
    • 2tsp sugar
    • 1tsp salt
    For the meatballs
    1. Pre-heat the oven at 200c
    2. Chop up the onion finely (I used a mini food processor), keep half for the sauce
    3. Peel and de-skin the chorizo and cut into small pieces - I chucked this in my mini-food processor to make things quicker
    4. Add the onion and chopped chorizo into a bowl with the minced beef and mix together well
    5. Shape the mixture into small balls - I made them so they fit in the palm of my hand and this made about thirty meatballs.
    6. Bake in the oven for about 30-40 minutes
    For the sauce
    1. Chop the garlic finely and add to a large pan along with the onion and a splash of oil. Cook on a medium heat until softened.
    2. Add both sets of passata, along with the sherry vinegar, salt and sugar and bring to a boil.
    3. Simmer on a medium heat to reduce the sauce - I cooked mine for about 40 minutes but you can change this depending on how you like your sauce


    You could win a heritage set of Alhambra Reserva 1925 beer for yourself.  All you have to do is answer this: What would be your perfect tapa for pairing with Alhambra Reserva 1925? Comment below and you could win a heritage set of Alhambra Reserva 1925 beer to enjoy with your own tapa creations!  The competition will end at midnight on the 15 November 2015 and the Alhambra team will choose the winner and send them the prize.


    Disclosure: I was sent a case of Alhambra Reserva 1925 for the purposes of this post…which I’m sure is some people’s idea of heaven.  The competition is being run on behalf of Alhambra; there is no cash alternative and my only responsibility is to pass on the name and email address of the winner.  Oh and you must be 18 or over to enter.