Monday 23 April 2018

Spicy Lamb Koftas

A fragrant combination of cardamom, clove, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, and paprika...

Spicy lamb koftas and flatbread
Spicy lamb koftas and flatbread

Aoife McElwain and Mark Duggan

Ras-El-Hanout is a North African spice mix that is constantly in need of replenishment in the forkful kitchen.

It's a fragrant combination of cardamom, clove, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, paprika and more. We love throwing it into Moroccan-style tagines or making a spicy tomato sauce for our baked eggs.


For the tomato sauce

1 clove of garlic

1 red chilli

½ tin of chopped tomatoes

1 teaspoon of brown sugar

Salt & Pepper

For the koftas

500g Irish lamb mince (or beef if you prefer)

1 tablespoon of Ras-El-Hanout spice mix

½ red onion, finely diced

1 clove of very finely chopped garlic

1 teaspoon of chilli flakes

1 tablespoon of freshly chopped mint

For the tahini dressing

3 tablespoons of Greek yogurt

1 tablespoon of tahini

To serve

Freshly chopped mint

Lime wedges

Spicy lamb koftas and flatbread


1. Start by making your tomato sauce. Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a small frying pan and fry the garlic and chilli for 2 to 3 minutes until they smell lovely. Add the half tin of chopped tomatoes and the brown sugar before adding a pinch of salt and pepper. Stir and then simmer over a steady heat and allow to reduce to a thick, glossy sauce while you prepare your koftas.

2. Mix all of the kofta ingredients together in a large bowl, using your hands to combine everything really well. Koftas have come to be identified with a long, finger shaped meatball so that's how we make ours. Once you've got them into shape, heat a bit of olive oil in a

large griddle or frying pan over a medium to high heat and cook the koftas for around 8 minutes until well browned on the outside and cooked to your liking on the inside.

3. Prepare your tahini dressing by mixing the Greek yogurt and the tahini together.

4. Serve your koftas on our flatbreads (or your favourite pittas) with a spoonful of your tomato sauce and a dollop of the tahini dressing. Finish with a sprinkling of freshly chopped mint and a slice of lime on the side.

First published in INSIDER Magazine, exclusive to Thursday's Irish Independent

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