Thursday, September 09, 2010

Lamb Kofte with Garlic Yogurt Sauce (Page 513)

RECIPE #1209

  • Date: Sunday, August 29, 2010 -- 6pm
  • Location: East Lansing, MI
  • Kitchen: Our House
  • Fellow Chef: Matty
  • Dining Companions: Bob, Laura, Helen, Charles, Clara, Corbett, Mary, and Allison
  • Recipe Rating: A-

I had been eying this recipe for years but it wasn't until very recently that all the pieces came together and I was able to make it. I started by making the sauce (not pictured above), which was a mixture of yogurt, garlic, and salt. Then I soaked some white bread for 30 minutes. I squeezed the bread, then mixed it with ground lamb, minced red onion, chopped parsley, baharat spice mix, Maras pepper flakes, Urfa pepper flakes, and salt. I formed the mixture into cigar shapes, and threaded them on wooden skewers which I had soaked in water. My special gentleman then grilled them to perfection on our new grill. This dish was quite good. I love lamb kofte and I think this version was as good as any I have had. The meatballs came out moist and extremely flavorful -- indeed the baharat, Maras and Urfa were wonderful together. The consensus around the table was that these lamb meatballs were tasty. The yogurt sauce wasn't anything amazing, but it went quite well with the lamb. I would certainly make this recipe again.

The recipe is here.

Only 84 recipes left to go!

This dish really epitomizes something that I love about this project -- the feeling of community surrounding it. When I started cooking through The Book, more than four and a half years ago now, I never would have guessed how many people would become involved in my endeavor. I never would have guessed how many generous people would send me ingredients and supplies, let me cook in their kitchen, lend me their equipment, and be willing to eat the crazy dishes I produce.

When I first read this recipe I suspected it would be delicious but I had no idea where to find ingredients like baharat, Maras pepper, and Urfa pepper. And I didn't own a grill. A while back now a blog reader from England, who I have never met, sent me a package with a bunch of Book ingredients in it. Included in his very generous gift was some baharat spice mix. With the baharat in hand I was extra vigilant about looking for the Maras and Urfa pepper flakes, but I never could find them. Then in April, for my birthday, my sister-in-law Deniz sent me a bunch of items off the Gourmet Project Wishlist, including the Maras and Urfa peppers! Awesome! With all the tricky ingredients finally in my pantry, I just needed to get my hands on a grill. For years I have been taking advantage of the grills of my friends (e.g. Alex, Emilee, Brian, my parents, my in-laws, etc...) to make the grilled dishes in The Book. But now that we have a house, I figured it was time to buy a grill! My special gentleman generously agreed that we could buy whichever grill I wanted and my father-in-law Dave helped me pick out the perfect grill! When I finally got around to making this dish it was for a big group of friends, which was the perfect way to serve a dish that had contributions from so many people!

As I near the end of my project people ask me often if I will miss it once I am done. I am ready to be finished, but of course I will miss it. In particular, I will miss the community that has become involved in it. Whenever I cook a meal for my friends and family they know it will be coming from The Book, and as far as I can tell they enjoy being part of the project. That has been a wonderful gift!

Tomorrow night there will be another adventure courtesy of The Book -- I am hosting my first-ever crawfish boil!


Anonymous said...

Hopefully you will continue to blog about new culinary adventures and life in general even after you (wow) finish the Project. You also have a big community of fans out there!

Anonymous said...

I so agree with Anonymous! Teena, you have a way with words and I look forward to every new post. I myself love to cook, whether it just be for my husband and I or a gang of friends. Your willingness to attack all these recipes and have so many friends be willing accomplices is inspiring!! Thanks!


Teena said...

Thanks! That's really nice of you guys to say!