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Kofta: Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kebabs

Kofta is a popular Middle Eastern dish consisting of spiced ground lamb formed into kebabs and grilled to perfection. These kebabs are known for their rich flavor and tender texture. They are often served with flatbread, rice, and a variety of dips and salads.

Kofta: Middle Eastern Ground Lamb Kebabs

Ingredients:

For the Kofta:

1 lb ground lamb
1 small onion, finely grated
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground paprika
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper (optional)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 egg (optional, for binding)
Bamboo or metal skewers (if using bamboo, soak in water for 30 minutes to prevent burning)

For Serving:

Flatbreads or pita bread
Tzatziki sauce or yogurt sauce
Fresh salad (tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, and lettuce)
Hummus or baba ganoush
Lemon wedges

Instructions:

Prepare the Kofta Mixture:

In a large bowl, combine the ground lamb, grated onion, minced garlic, chopped parsley, chopped cilantro, ground cumin, ground coriander, ground cinnamon, ground allspice, ground paprika, ground cayenne pepper (if using), salt, and black pepper.
Mix the ingredients thoroughly until well combined. If the mixture seems too loose, you can add an egg to help bind it.

Form the Kofta:

Divide the mixture into equal portions and shape each portion into a log or oval shape around the skewers. Press the mixture firmly to ensure it adheres to the skewer.

Preheat the Grill:

Preheat your grill to medium-high heat. If using a charcoal grill, ensure the coals are hot and have a white ash coating.

Grill the Kofta:

Brush the grill grates with a little oil to prevent sticking. Place the kofta skewers on the grill.
Grill for about 4-5 minutes per side, turning occasionally, until the kofta are cooked through and have a nice char.

Serve:

Remove the kofta from the grill and let them rest for a few minutes.
Serve the kofta kebabs with flatbreads or pita bread, tzatziki sauce or yogurt sauce, a fresh salad, and additional sides such as hummus or baba ganoush. Provide lemon wedges for squeezing over the kebabs.

Tips:

Tips:

Meat Alternatives: Ground beef or a mixture of beef and lamb can be used instead of all lamb.
Herb Variations: Experiment with different herbs such as mint or dill for a unique flavor.
Cooking Methods: Kofta can also be cooked in a skillet or under the broiler if a grill is not available.

Wine Pairing:

Pair your kofta with a robust red wine such as Syrah or a medium-bodied white wine like Sauvignon Blanc.

Enjoy your homemade Kofta, a delicious and aromatic dish that brings the flavors of the Middle East to your table.

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