Kufte de Prassa for Passover (Leek Meatballs for Passover)

Recipe by Capeloto Sendowski

“Memories of flavorful and fluffy kufte de prassa are part of my Passover remembrance,” says Linda.”During the rest of the year, especially at Rosh Hashanah when I make kufte de prassa, I use breadcrumbs to bind and coat the meatballs.”

Ingredients

  • 4 large fresh leeks
  • 1 pound ground beef chuck
  • 1 cup parsley, washed and chopped
  • 1/2 cup matzo meal
  • 1 teaspoon salt, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 3 to 4 extra large eggs

For frying

  • 1 cup matzo cake meal
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 3 eggs
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • Lemon wedges for garnish (optional)

 Directions

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  1. Trim off the top of the leeks and cut off the dark greens, leaving only the light green and white portion of each leek.  Slit leeks vertically from top to bottom and rinse them to remove the grit between the layers.
  2. Slice leeks vertically into thin strips and then chop across to make a fine dice.  Put leeks into a large pan. Add enough water to cover leeks. Cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid and cook over medium-high heat for about 15 minutes, or until leeks are very soft. Remove lid and let cool.
  3. Drain leeks in a colander and push out all excess water, squeezing them with your hands.  (You can do this several days ahead.  Keep squeezed out leaks in a container with a tight lid in refrigerator.)
  4. In a bowl, combine cooked diced leeks with ground beef, matzo meal, parsley, and eggs.  Season this mixture with salt and pepper, to taste.
  5. Set a waxed paper-lined baking sheet nearby. Put matzo cake meal into a shallow dish and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Form 25 to 27 golf ball size kuftes from meat mixture.  Roll each kufte in seasoned matzo cake meal and place on prepared baking sheet.
  6. Beat eggs in a shallow dish. Set aside.
  7. Fill a large sauté pan with oil, approximately 1/4-inch deep. Heat oil over medium-high heat. Dip each kufte in beaten egg and then place in hot oil to fry until golden brown, turning gently only once so as not to pierce them. Remove kufte from oil and drain on layered paper towels.
  8. Place kufte on a platter and garnish with lemon wedges, if desired. Serve.
  9. Kufte may be made ahead and frozen.  Defrost and reheat in a 300° F oven.

Serves 12 to 18 as a side dish. (Recipe can be doubled.)