Alice is

cooking Lamb and Date Koftas with Saffron Yoghurt

April 28, 2012

In honor of my trip to Turkey last year, I present…Lamb Koftas. Just about the only things that me and my friends ate in an entire week. I’ve added a saffron yoghurt, because it looks so beautiful and summery, and I have a crazy amount of Turkish saffron that I brought back with me, like a smuggler.

These little koftas are a good way of jazz-ing up lamb mince, creating an elegant meal in very little time at all. They’re basically, spiced, shaped meatballs.

You’ll need:

  • A packet of organic lamb mince (about 500g)
  • One diced onion
  • 10 Medjool dates (chopped)
  • 1 tbsp ras-el-hanout spice blend
  • 4 crushed garlic cloves
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground chili
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh mint
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • Salt and Pepper

Put all of your ingredients in to the food processor and blitz to form a rough mince. Shape your koftas in to balls, the size of a golf ball, and then either shape them on to a squewer, or shape them into roundish shapes, like a ball with a little point at the end.

These are best barbequed, or fry them in a very hot pan with no oil, the lamb mince is fatty enough not to need extra.

For the yoghurt, I got a few stands of saffron and soaked them in 50ml of hot milk, to draw out the colour, and flavour. I then added the milk to some plain yoghurt, with salt, pepper, some lemon juice and a little sumac.

You could use finely chopped cucumber if you don’t have any saffron.

Serve with warmed pitta bread, parsley salad and a lemon wedge.

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