Turkish Lamb Köfte Recipe

Posted on

By Pete Evans August/September 2014 Issue – Fine Cooking

Found all over Turkey and the Middle East, köfte (KOF-ta) are essentially meatballs, often made from lamb. They’re traditionally served with warm flatbread, raw onions, and plain yogurt, but they’re also delicious paired here with a bright, tangy yogurt sauce. The spice mix makes more than you’ll need—use it on beef, and grilled vegetables, or stir it into hummus and other dips.

Ingredients

For the spice mix
1 Tbs. ground cumin
1-1/2 tsp. dried mint
1-1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. sweet paprika
1 tsp. hot paprika
1 tsp. cracked black pepper

For the pomegranate-yogurt sauce
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 Tbs. pomegranate molasses; more for serving
2 Tbs. chopped fresh mint
1 tsp. ground sumac or 1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice

For the köfte
1 lb. ground lamb
1 medium plum tomato, seeded and finely diced
1/4 cup finely grated red onion
1 tsp. pomegranate molasses
1 medium clove garlic, minced
3/4 tsp. kosher salt
8 12-inch flat, wide skewers (soaked in water for 30 minutes if wooden)
Vegetable oil, as needed
2 Tbs. pomegranate seeds (optional)
2 Tbs. small fresh mint leaves (optional)

Preparation

Make the spice mix
1. Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl.

Make the yogurt sauce
1. Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl.

Make the köfte
1. Put the lamb, tomato, onion, pomegranate molasses, garlic, 1 Tbs. of the spice mix, and salt in a large bowl. Using your hands, mix until combined and the meat is a bit sticky. With wet hands, divide the lamb into 8 portions. Working with one portion at a time and rewetting your hands as necessary to prevent sticking, press the lamb around the skewers into sausage shapes about 4-1/2 inches long. Transfer to a baking sheet, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 and up to 4 hours.

2. Prepare a medium-high (400°F to 475°F) gas or charcoal grill fire for direct grilling. Oil the grill grate. Grill the köfte, turning once, until no longer pink in the center (cut into one to check), about 6 minutes.

3. Garnish with the pomegranate seeds and mint, if using. Drizzle more pomegranate molasses over the yogurt sauce, and then serve with the sauce.

Best Restaurants in America If you eat out in the U.S.A. and want the best dining experiences possible, this guide is for you What makes a good restaurant a “best”? Food that’s better than just good, of course. A dining room and a level of service that suit the quality of what’s on the plate. A good wine list (which doesn’t always mean an encyclopedic one), good beers and/or cocktails where appropriate. And then the less easily quantifiable stuff: personality, imagination (or intelligent commitment to a lack of same), consistency. 101 Best Restaurants in America (Gallery) When we were a young website, way back in 2011, we drew up our first 101 ranking ourselves, making a list of the places where we, The Daily Meal’s editors, liked to eat. Taking into consideration our mood, our budget, and where we happened to be when we get hungry, how would we vote, we asked ourselves — not only with our critical faculties but with our mouths and our wallets? Where would we send friends? Where would we want to dine if we had one night in this city or that? By this method, we ended up with a shortlist of 150 places. Then we argued, advocated, and cajoled each other on behalf of restaurants ranging from old-fashioned to avant-garde, ultra-casual to super-fancy. Finally, we invited an illustrious panel of judges (restaurant critics, food and lifestyle writers, and bloggers) from across America to help order restaurants via an anonymous survey and tallied results to assemble a ranked list. Upstairs, the simple Scandinavian-style dining room is kitted out with tables that look like tangled tree trunks, carved by Tom senior. The ingredient-led 12-course tasting menu is constantly changing (you might spot one of the chefs picking a final herb flourish outside minutes before it hits your plate). Starters could include a mouthful of smoked eel and apple, or an exploding dumpling of ox cheek and lovage. A crapaudine beetroot slow-cooked in beef fat is meaty in texture as well as flavour, and local lamb is paired with turnip and mint. Even the bread with sour butter is sensational. Afterwards you’ll be grateful for the walk through the village to a pretty rose-covered house where some of the nine bedrooms have antique oak four-posters and copper bateau baths. Wake to the sound of cows mooing in the next field and head back to the inn for a simple breakfast of sheep’s yogurt with fresh berry compote and house granola or toasted brioche heaped with mushrooms and a duck egg. Unsurprisingly, the most talked about restaurant in Yorkshire is often full, so book it quick. By Tabitha Joyce.

Leave a Reply

Your e-mail address will not be published. Required fields are marked *