When Traci Des Jardins opened Public House at San Francisco's AT&T Park, sports fans lined up to watch games on the big screen and drink standout beers. But the high-end brewpub's food is its own draw. Jardins's menu includes steakhouse staples (wedge salad) and ballpark favorites (artisanal hotdogs) among its reimagined classics. Even the meatball sub has been upgraded with flavorful lamb and aromatic saffron sofrito. But don't worry: This sandwich is still an ideal match for beer and a ball game.
Lamb Meatball Sandwiches with Saffron Sofrito
Recipe adapted from Traci Des Jardins, Public House, San Francisco
Yield: 4 sandwiches
1 pound ground lamb
¼ pound ground pork
¼ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 teaspoons chopped fresh mint leaves
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
Zest of 1 lemon
½ teaspoon chile powder
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup finely diced yellow onion
1 cup white wine
½ teaspoon crushed saffron threads
1 cup stewed canned tomatoes (such as Muir Glen), roughly chopped
4 Italian or French rolls, split lengthwise
1. Preheat the oven to 350˚ and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Make the meatballs: In a large bowl, mix the lamb with the pork, parsley, mint, thyme, lemon zest, chile powder, cayenne and ¾ teaspoon salt until well combined. Shape the mixture into 20 golf-ball-size meatballs and arrange them on the baking sheet. Bake until browned and cooked through, about 18 minutes.
3. Make the sofrito: Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until soft and translucent, about 6 minutes. Increase the heat to medium-high and add the wine and saffron. Simmer the wine until reduced by half, about 4 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and cook until the sauce thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Season with salt.
4. Stir the meatballs into the sofrito. Stuff 5 meatballs inside each roll. Spoon the sofrito over the top and serve immediately.