Rosemary and Olive Meatballs with Fennel Tzatziki

This simple lunch makes a welcome change from wilted salads and sad sandwiches. It can be enjoyed warm or cold and mixes up your lunchtime with a variety of flavours and textures.

The Lunchbox Book
From the book The Lunchbox Book


With a few simple ingredients, these beef meatballs are transformed into little pleasure bombs. Add some fresh rosemary, tangy olives, and a bit of Parmesan, and the cooking aromas alone are reminiscent of Mediterranean holidays. Served with a distinctive fennel tzatziki, they taste fresh and light.

Serves 1


1/2 small fennel bulb
1 tsp finely chopped dill
125g natural yogurt
1 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper
8 black olives, pitted
150g minced beef
1 tbsp finely chopped rosemary
1 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp breadcrumbs
2 tbsp oil


1. For the fennel tzatziki, discard the stem and slice the fennel finely. Finely chop the slices. Mix together the fennel, dill, yogurt, and olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.

2. For the meatballs, finely chop the olives. In a bowl, combine the meat, olives, rosemary, Parmesan, breadcrumbs, and a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Knead the mixture together with your hands and shape into small balls.

3. Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the meatballs until golden brown all over. Remove and drain on kitchen paper. Serve the meatballs with the fennel tzatziki.

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