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Mutthiya Kebabs


My sister works with plenty of great cooks, but Samarna stands out as a truly exceptional home cook – she invited me to her kitchen earlier this year to cook, and made the most amazing ground meat kebabs – like large meatballs she shaped in the palm of her hands. They were simple, but delicious – you could make them with ground beef or lamb, and mix together a quick tzatziki to dip them in or dribble overtop. The perfect kind of food when you have a few extra people at the table.

  1. 2 lbs ground beef or lamb
  2. 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  3. 1 bread slice, finely crumbled with your hands
  4. 2 tsp ginger-garlic paste
  5. 1 tsp ground cumin
  6. 1 tsp chili powder
  7. ¼ tsp black pepper
  8. ½ tsp turmeric
  9. ½ tsp garam masala
  10. 1 tsp salt
  1. 1 cup oil
  2. 1 onion, finely chopped
  3. 1 tbsp ginger & garlic paste
  4. 4 tomatoes, chopped
  5. 1 green chili, seeded and chopped
  6. 1 tsp red chili powder
  7. ½ tsp turmeric
  8. 1 tbsp ground coriander
  9. 1 tsp cumin
  10. ¼ tsp black pepper
  11. ½ tsp garam masala
  12. 1 tsp salt
  13. fresh cilantro for garnish
  1. In a large bowl, mix the meat, onion, bread crumbs, ginger-garlic paste, spices and salt with your hands. (When well-blended, the meat will change colour, becoming a little darker.) Shape the meat mixture into oval kebabs about the size of a small egg. Fry in oil in a shallow pan until they’re lightly brown all over. Set aside.
  2. In a pot set over medium-high heat, heat the oil and cook the onions, stirring constantly, until golden. Add the ginger-garlic paste and stir for a few seconds. Blend the tomatoes and chili and stir them in. Add the spices in the order given, stirring after each. Fry for two minutes, then add 2 cups of water, reduce heat, cover and cook for 5 to 7 minutes. Stir well and reduce heat to low.
  3. When the water has evaporated and oil has risen to the top, add the kebabs. Fry for a minute and add another two cups of water, cover and cook for 10 minutes, turning the kebabs every few minutes. When the oil has risen to the top again and the gravy is the consistency of Greek yogurt, serve topped with cilantro.
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