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Turkey Kofta

November 25, 2013

NOVEMBER 24th, 2013 — After wrapping my thesis film, Daily Bread, I wanted to start the rounds and rounds of thank-yous, so the first fully homemade meal I’ve made in like weeks had a pretty Middle Eastern vibe to it: turkey kofta (or kafta), mujaddara, Israeli salad, and date-almond thumbprint cookies.

Kofta, or kafta, is a Middle Eastern cross between meatloaf and kebab, I’d say, since you use minced meat which is then skewered and grilled. It’s traditionally made from lamb, beef, or a mixture thereof, and I had some as part of my set decoration on the table of the Palestinian family in my film.

So what did you do?
Kofta is relatively simple to make. You essentially mix all the ingredients together and then grill it.
I whisked the following in a large mixing bowl:

  • 1 tbsp dried thyme – oregano mixture
  • 1 tbsp dried onion powder
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1.5 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 beaten egg

I then added 1 1/3 lbs ground turkey breast. (Yeah, I used turkey because I’m a dandy and am a petty sucker to the idea of meat being 99% fat-free.) I used my hands to mix it just enough so that the spices would fold in nicely. I then threw in about 1/4 cup whole wheat flour to soak up some of the moisture and to make it easier for me to handle for the next step: rolling the meat into sausages.

I then cooked these on a hot grill pan for several minutes on all sides on medium-high heat, and checked until they were thoroughly cooked. Then served immediately.

Tukey Kofte (1)Result? Really quite tasty, and goes great with the garlic-yogurt sauce. As a review, the garlic-yogurt sauce is

  • 1 cup Fage 0% Greek yogurt
  • 1.5 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp dried dill
  • ground black pepper, to taste

Lessons learned?
I forgot to get fresh parsley (or really any other herb, for that matter), which would have been a refreshing accent in the meat mixture, and I also threw my entire onion into the mujaddara, so I forgot to save some for the meat mixture. These additional mix-ins I think would have been great for a balance of taste and texture so that the kofta is not just a solid chunk of meat.

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