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Killer Kofte

Since my wife is pregnant, I have been changing how I prepare the proteins we eat at home. During this time, she needs more variety, so I am preparing ground beef in different ways.

Last month, on twitter, I started to follow and interact with Vic Basmadjian (@ketochoahvic), a Montreal based coach. I recently saw him post a delicious looking plate of Kofte and Low Carb friendly Middle Eastern sides. A light bulb went off. Kelly would love this! I asked Vic for the ingredients and method of prep, and he was more than happy to share it with me. I made this dish once last week, and it went over so well, I am already making it again. It is made with simple, fresh ingredients. It is better to prepare it the day before to allow the flavors to mingle, but if you need to make it in a hurry, it will work.

You will need: 2 Pounds of Ground Beef (80/20) 1/2 Bunch Parsley, finely chopped 2 Garlic Cloves, minced 1 Tbs Aleppo Pepper Zest of 1 lemon Salt and Pepper to taste

Method of Prep:

  1. Place the ground beef in a large mixing bowl.

  2. Combine the remaining ingredients.

  3. Add to ground beef and mix well to combine.

  4. Cover and allow to chill for up to 24 hours.

A few tips:

I found Aleppo Pepper at Ed Hyder’s, my local Middle Eastern Grocer. If a shop like this is available, I suggest supporting it, and you will probably get a much better price. Otherwise, shop online, Amazon, or another source. I purchased 4 oz, and I suspect it will last quite a while. You only need 1 Tbs for every 2 lbs. of ground meat. Do not omit this ingredient; it adds such a lovely and unique flavor to the Kofte.

I have tried many different zesters. A microplane is my preference. It is best to leave the tool stationary and drag the fruit across it. After each stroke slightly rotate the lemon. You will get the hang of it quickly. I learned this from a French pastry chef during an internship at The Chatham Bars Inn in 2008, and still use this technique.

Traditionally, this meat is shaped into handmade sausages, but patties work just as well. I cooked mine on the grill, but they can also be baked at 375º for roughly 20 minutes. They are delicious served right away, but also make wonderful leftovers. (The second time I made these, my grill was out of gas, I used the airfryer at 375, and it worked out fine, although it was better grilled).

I highly recommend serving them with a fresh Greek/Israeli salad (if that fits into your meal plan) or grilled vegetables or kebobs. They can also stand alone.

Let me know how it goes. This recipe is a keeper that I am going back to often.

Note: Don’t mix this up more than one day ahead, it takes on too much of a lemon flavor, although still tasty, a bit too lemony (especially for Kelly).

And of course my beautiful pregnant wife. She is my rock!


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