If you are looking for a quick and easy meal, this Grilled Kofte recipe is perfect for those busy weeknights. If you have never had kofte before, it resembles a hamburger, but with added spices. It is a Turkish dish, but many Middle Eastern countries have their own variation of it. It is so versatile, you can pair it up with various grilled vegetables, eat it with pita bread or with rice. For a condiment, you can dip it in some spicy paprika, cumin or even plain Greek yogurt! Typically, it is made with ground beef, but you can substitute ground Turkey as I did in this recipe.
1) To prepare this grilled kofte dish, you will need to make sure all the ingredients are prepared and ready to be mixed so make sure whatever needs to be chopped and grated, that gets done first.
2) In a medium sized bowl, start by adding the ground beef. On top of the ground beef, you will need to add the grated onion, egg, chopped parsley, bread crumbs, dried thyme, red pepper powder and salt, then mix. I recommend mixing with your hands as it makes it much easier and the ingredients seem to blend in much better.
3) Once mixed, allow to sit for at least 30 minutes. This will give the ground beef and spices the meld with one another.
4) While the mixture is setting, start preparing any side dishes for the meal and pre-heat your grill.
5) Once you are ready to start cooking, grab about a golf ball size amount of kofte and shape them into oval sizes (see picture above). As with hamburgers, the size will shrink once you start to cook it, so depending on how many people you are cooking for, you may want to make the sizes smaller or larger. I usually use the golf ball size as a general reference.
6) For about 1 pound shaped into oval sizes, it yielded about 17 patties.
7) Just know that there are numerous recipes on the web with variations in the ingredients and preparation styles. Each country or region has their own versions of this dish. My version, comes straight from my mom. There is no absolute way of making this dish. You can experiment with other spices or combinations.
This dish can be served with a side salad, rice or french fries. It is served hot, right off the grill. You can also place them in pita bread with some lettuce and tomato, as well as, use hummus to dip them in.
If you have difficulty finding the spices listed for this recipe at your local grocery store, especially the red pepper powder, you can easily get it on the internet, along with other exotic spices (Just click the allepo pepper link in the ingredients list for more information). This is a great option if you are wanting to broaden your spice cabinet and don't have specialty groceries around you. However, if you do not want to use the spices listed or purchase them on-line, you can substitute the red pepper powder for some paprika. Either way, it will taste great!
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