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Spicy Moroccan Mushroom Meatballs with Harrisa Aioli

  • Author: Courtesy of the Culinary Institute of America and the Mushroom Council.
  • Yield: 46 Portions for Appetizers 1x




  • 1 pound mushroom, button finely minced, sautéed and cooled
  • 1 pound ground meat (turkey, chicken, pork or beef)
  • ½ cup bread crumbs
  • 1 egg, large
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
  • 1 teaspoon cumin, ground
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoons Harissa paste
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 1 cup olive oil for frying
  • 1 cup vegetable oil for frying

Spicy Harrisa Aioli (Garlic, chili mayo)
Yield:2 cups

  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 large cloves garlic peeled and pureed
  • 1 Tablespoon Harrisa paste
  • Kosher salt to taste


  1. Meatballs
    Place the mushroom and meat mixture in a large mixing bowl. Add the bread crumbs, egg, salt, pepper, spices and lemon zest. Mix gently to combine. Check to make sure the mixture will hold together. Take about ¼ cup of the mixture, and shape it into a pattie a little wider than it is thick. If it falls apart, add a tablespoon or two more of the bread crumbs. Shape the mixture into balls about the size of a walnut, and put them on a plate. Chill them at least for 30 minutes before frying.
  2. When the meatballs are chilled, pour enough oil in a heavy frying pan to come to a depth of about ½ an inch. Heat the oil on low heat, until the surface begins to ripple and look hazy. The temperature of the oil should be 350 degrees.
  3. Add the meatballs to the hot oil, leaving room around them so that they brown evenly. Cook on one side until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Turn them cover and cook on the second side about 2 – 3 more minutes until golden brown.
  4. When finished, remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels and serve with dipping sauce.
  5. Spicy Harrisa Aioli (Garlic, chili mayo)
    In the bowl of a food processor add the egg yolks, pureed garlic , and harrisa paste. Place the top on the bowl and turn on the machine and slowly drizzle in the oils. Once the oil is added stop the machine and check for consistence, if to thick you can whisk in a little water too thin as needed . Add the salt and taste for flavor.