Spicy Kofta with Lemon

Spicy Kofta with Lemon


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Kofta is a Middle Eastern equivalent of a meatball which is usually made from lamb. This is a wonderfully spicy version that you can serve in the middle of the table and let everyone dig in.


Serves: 4 

  • 2 onions, grated or blended to a puree
  • 450g lamb mince
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, diced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 pinch salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 20g butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 25g ginger, finely diced
  • 1 fresh chilli, finely diced
  • 1 pinch saffron, if available
  • 25g fresh coriander, finely diced
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 300ml cold water
  • 1 lemon, quartered

Preparation:20min  ›  Cook:55min  ›  Ready in:1hour15min 

  1. In a large mixing bowl add half the onion to the lamb along with the cinnamon, parsley, cumin, cayenne, salt and pepper.
  2. Using your hands mix everything together for about 5 minutes. Shape the lamb into small balls about the size of a walnut.
  3. Take a heavy based saucepan with a lid and melt the butter with the olive oil. Add the remaining onion, ginger, chilli and saffron. Cook gently until the onions begin to colour; about 10 minutes. Add the coriander and lemon juice.
  4. Pour in the water then bring to the boil and add the lamb meatballs. Reduce to a simmer and cover the saucepan.
  5. Poach the meatballs gently for about 20 minutes turning every few minutes. Remove the lid and add the lemon quarters into the saucepan and then simmer with the lid off for a further 10 minutes to allow the sauce to reduce.
  6. Serve with fresh bread, couscous or rice.

Saffron Substitute

If you don't have Saffron you can use turmeric or paprika to provide colour to the dish.

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