Meals for Moms: Mini Moroccan Spiced Lamb Keftas with Couscous

I don’t know about you but I’m loving the newest series on my blog: Meals for Moms. I’ve recruited 2 foodies to contribute a recipe once a month to help inspire us over-worked home chefs and their delicious recipes and pictures have got my mouth watering! This one is definitely one we’ll be using again and again… Thanks Helene from Work Food Home!


In our home we love experimenting with flavours. There is nothing better than discovering new tastes that can become new family staples.

For this recipe we’ve taken inspiration from North Africa. It’s got some great Moroccan flavours in the meatballs, or “keftas” as they are known.

Couscous is another favourite of ours. Not only is it inexpensive, but a little goes a long way. It is quick to make and you can spice it up in pretty much any way. Definitely something to add to the family pantry!


Mini Moroccan Spiced Lamb Keftas with Couscous




For the yogurt

125 ml plain yogurt

2 tsp harissa paste

Pinch of salt


For the keftas

500g of minced lamb

1 tbsp Moroccan spice

2 tsp harissa paste

1 tsp salt

2 tbsp olive oil


For the couscous

4 tbsp olive oil

1 cup of couscous

1 cup chicken stock

1 tsp salt

1/2 small butternut, diced

1/2 red pepper, diced

1/2 yellow pepper, diced

1/2 red onion, finely chopped

1 teaspoon garlic


For the garnish

1 lemon (used for zest and juice)

1 orange (used for zest and juice)

3 spring onions, chopped

Handful of mint leaves, roughly chopped

Handful of coriander, roughly chopped



Add 125 ml of yogurt, two teaspoons of harissa paste and a pinch of salt to a small bowl. Mix well and set in the fridge until serving.

Mix the lamb, Moroccan spice, harissa paste and salt. Form into oval shapped meatballs – you should get about 16 little keftas out. Place them on a plate and flatten slightly.

Add two tablespoons of olive oil to a pan and place over medium heat. Add the couscous and stir it through the olive oil for one minute. Add the chicken stock and season with salt. Stir the couscous with a fork to separate the grains. Turn off the heat, cover with a lid and allow the couscous to swell.

In a separate pan, add two tablespoons of olive oil. Add the diced butternut to the pan first and fry for 5 minutes, before adding the onions and peppers. Fry this for another 5 minutes. Once done, add a teaspoon of garlic to the veggies and stir it through.

Heat a griddle pan over high heat. Lightly coat the keftas in olive oil. Fry on each side for 5 minutes, ensuring you get a nice char on the keftas. TIP: Don’t put olive oil in the pan as this will cause the pan to smoke. By coating the keftas with olive oil, you are guaranteed less smoke and the meat won’t stick to the griddle pan.

Once the keftas are done, the couscous should be ready. Fluff the couscous with a fork and add the vegetables. Lightly mix this through.

Zest the lemon and orange, making sure not to get the white rind included as this will give a bitter taste.

To serve, add the couscous to a big serving tray. Place the keftas on top.

Scatter the zest of the lemon and orange, the chopped spring onion, coriander and mint over and finish it off with a squeeze of lemon juice and orange juice over the top.

Serve with the harissa flavoured yogurt.

(For a bit of a kick, sprinkle some finely chopped chilli over the top.)


Text & Images: Helene Pretorius


Helene Pretorius

Helene Pretorius lives in Cape Town where she shares her love for food and wine with her husband! By day she works in the financial services industry and in her downtime she spends time with her dachshunds children and pursuing her passion for travel.

1 Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.