Lamb meatballs bound with hummus?
July 12, 2011 6:12 PM   Subscribe

Can I bind lamb meatballs with hummus?

I was thinking of making lamb meatballs for dinner. Usually when I make meat patties of whatever kind I bind them with an egg, and I know other people use softened bread. What if instead I added some hummus to the ground lamb, formed it into balls, and fried them in olive oil? Will they hold together? Does hummus mind being fried? Is this a monumentally stupid idea? Of course I could just try it and see what happens, but if it comes out disgusting I'll have to make another dinner.
posted by escabeche to Food & Drink (6 answers total)
While ground chickpeas would probably work, I suspect this is gonna turn out pretty sticky because of the oils and other additives in the hummus.
posted by ajarbaday at 6:15 PM on July 12, 2011

Make burger-shaped patties instead. No binder required.
posted by bcwinters at 6:17 PM on July 12, 2011

Hummus is fine fried, but it ain't gonna bind very well; the hommous is too wet. If it was chick pea flour or felafel mix, you might be able to get something going, but this will probably break apart on deep frying into tiny little bits.
posted by smoke at 6:24 PM on July 12, 2011

Yeah, I second agar --- hummus is made smooth by adding olive oil to the ground chickpeas and tahini. Basically it's chickpea dust in solution. I suspect that it will melt into the surrounding fat as it heats.

I can't say I've tried it, though. But do you absolutely need a binder, anyway? Most recipes call for browning meatballs, even if you're boiling/stewing them later --- if you crust 'em up they should hold together like a burger does.
posted by Diablevert at 6:28 PM on July 12, 2011

Best answer: Instead of meatballs made with hummus, you could have hummus made with meat.
posted by neroli at 6:55 PM on July 12, 2011 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: I used the recipe neroli linked to. Well, sort of -- I made the lamb as per the recipe and served it in half-pitas with hummus from the store and chopped tomato/cucumber/lettuce. Big hit! Thanks, Ask MetaFilter!
posted by escabeche at 5:31 PM on July 13, 2011

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