Quorn ‘meatballs’ with sour cherries and maple syrup

This recipe is another based on A Year in My Kitchen, by Skye Gyngell, as I was in search of something to use her savoury spice mix with.  Some of the recipes I’ve tried are just so intense in their flavours they’d probably belong better in a restaurant than for a mellow week day supper, but this one come down just the right side for me. 
Quorn do slightly different recipes for different countries, but in the UK we have the Swedish meatballs.  I usually cook these in a creamy sauce, but this made an interesting change.  The final recipe works brilliantly well with the sweet potato mash.
This serves 4.
Quorn ‘meatballs’ with sour cherries and maple syrup
2 bags of Quorn Swedish meatballs
2 red onions, peeled and finely sliced
2 tablespoons of finely chopped coriander stems and leaves
1 medium red chilli, finely sliced
4cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped (I grate it)
1 tablespoon of savoury spice mix (or Chinese 5 spice will work okay)
1 lime, juiced
2 x 400g tinned tomatoes
2 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
2 tablespoons of maple syrup
2 tablespoons of tamari soya sauce
75g dried sour cherries.  If you can, use the unsweetened.
Heat the olive oil in a wide, deep sauté pan, then add the meatballs in a single layer (cooking them in batches if necessary to avoid overcrowding the pan).  Turn the heat down slightly and fry until the meatballs are nicely browned  on all sides. When the meatballs are evenly coloured, remove and drain on kitchen paper.
To make the sauce, add a little butter to the pan and then the onions. Sweat gently over a low heat for 5 minutes or so until they are translucent, then add the coriander stems and roots, chillies, ginger and spice mix. Stir and cook for a couple of minutes, then add the lime juice, followed by the chopped tomatoes, garlic and a good pinch of salt.
Bring to a simmer, cover and cook over a low heat for 20 minutes, stirring from time to time, until you have a rich. Now, add the maple syrup, tamari and sour cherries and turn the heat up for a moment or two – to allow the flavours to get to know each other.
Add the meatballs to the sauce, lower the heat and simmer gently for about 20 minutes until they are cooked through.  Taste and adjust the flavours if necessary.
Serve, scattered with roughly torn coriander leaves.

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