Kebab. Kebob. Kebaaab. Sort of like tomato, tomaaato. Whatever you call them, kebabs are sort of the ultimate version of meat on a stick. Originally a Turkish delight dating to the 1,300s (most likely earlier, as it is basically meat on a stick, cooked over fire) kebab has also become a staple of Indian menus.
This recipe has been adapted from the Best ever Indian Cookbook by Mridula Baljekar. You can find it on Amazon here. I roughly doubled the recipe.
4 lbs ground lamb
2 large onions, diced
1 4″chunk of ginger, diced
4 cloves garlic, crushed
2 green chilies, finely diced
2 tsp chili powder
4 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
2 tsp garam masala
4 tsp coriander, finely ground
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp salt
2 tbsp plain yogurt
2 tbsp oil
First off, depending on where you live, it can be a challenge to find ground lamb at the grocery store. You can usually find it at a good butcher in a pinch. I bought a 4 lb boneless lamb roast from Costco and ground it twice using the grinder attachment on the KitchenAid stand mixer. I left all the fat intact so the meat did not dry out. The first grind was coarse and the second one fine. It was a very time consuming process, but ended up with the perfect texture for kebabs.
After that, it is all pretty simple.
Throw everything except oil and yogurt into the large bowl of your food processor. If your machine is smaller, you might have to split it into batches. Zing it until the mixture binds together like mush. Then, cover and refrigerate for at least an hour.
During this time, you might also want to soak your wood skewers in water to prevent burning if your grill is a flaming wonder.
Heat the grill to high.
Form meat into long sausage shaped blobs on skewers. This takes a bit of practice and is pretty messy. Just have fun and go for it. The original recipe says you will get 8 kebabs, but I doubled it and made 24.
Brush kebabs with yogurt and oil and place on the hot grill. Close the lid and turn the heat down. This will sear the kebabs to keep in flavour and give a nice crust, but also makes it easy to turn them. After a few minutes, open the lid and turn them. You might want a spray bottle of beer or water nearby to extinguish any flaming skewers. Keep turning them every few minutes until they are brown all over and are cooked through. If you have a meat thermometer, they are done when they reach about 150 degrees F.
Be ready to enjoy the absolute best kebabs you have ever tasted in any restaurant!
The original recipe calls for them to be served with raita. I hate cucumbers, so I am not including the recipe! So there!