South African meatballsSouth African meatballs

These meatballs, known as frikadelle, are usually made with leftover lamb, beef or pork. They are fried or baked as flat patties and often served with sweet chutney and chopped red onions.

Makes 12


  • 500g/1lb minced cooked lamb, beef or pork or a combination of all 3
  • ½ large onion, grated or finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons bread crumbs
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp powdered coriander
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • Sunflower oil
  • Flour


  1. Combine the meat with the spices, onion, bread crumb, egg and tomato puree and form into 12 slightly squashed balls.
  2. Roll these in seasoned flour and refrigerate for an hour. This helps the meat to tenderise and balls to set together a bit so they stay together when fried.
  3. Heat 1mm of oil in a heavy pan until it just starts to smoke. Gently fry the meat balls on both sides until browned and crispy. You can also brush them with oil and roast them for 20 minutes in a hot oven.
  4. Serve on thick slices of toasted bread with chutney and some chopped red onion and fresh coriander


Adding grated root vegetable to the mixture bulks it out and adds extra moisture and nutrition.
You can add equal weights of vegetables and meat, but you may need to add a little extra breadcrumb to help stick these together.
Frikadelle can be lightly cooked, then added to a rich and spicy tomato sauce and topped with béchamel or grated cheese and baked.

Recipe by the Community Chef

See also