Grilled minced meat kebabs
honestly speaking this kebab is the most popular delicious Persian kebab which is found every where in Iran. It is a great combination of different materials which gives you a substantial taste.
- ground beef (80-85% lean)
- ground lamb (80-85% lean)
- yellow onions, quartered
- garlic cloves, peeled and minced
- sumac (sold at the Middle Eastern markets)
- ground black pepper
- turmeric powder
- butter, melted (for brushing over the kebabs after grilling)
- ripe but firm Roma tomatoes
- large green bell pepper, stem removed, deseeded and quartered
- Olive oil to brush the vegetables with before grilling
- You will need ten 1-inch metal skewers.
- For best results the meat should be fresh (not previously frozen) and at room temperature.
- Finely chop the onion pieces in a food processor until very juicy. Place a fine metal mesh over a bowl and strain the processed onion by pressing it with a spatula. Discard the juice.
- Add the remaining onion pulp to a medium bowl.
- Add the ground beef and lamb, minced garlic, salt, spices and egg to the bowl. Knead all of the ingredients for several minutes until the mixture is paste like and sticks together without falling apart.
- Fill up a small bowl with tap water, this is for wetting your fingers so the meat does not stick to them when you are making the kebabs.
- Divide the meat into 10 equal balls.
- Get one of the balls of meat in the palm of your hand, place the skewer on top of it and squeeze the meat around the skewer. Once you make sure that meat is not going to fall off, start squeezing it from top to bottom and cover the middle section of the skewer. Leave the top and bottom of the skewer clear. Wet your fingers with the tap water and keep squeezing and spreading the meat evenly around the skewer. The meat should be about ½ inch thick all around the skewer.
- Set the skewer gently on a shallow baking sheet with sides, so the meat does not touch the floor of the baking sheet. Continue making the rest of the kebabs. At this point the uncooked kebabs can sit over the counter while you get the grill ready.
- To Grill Kebab Koobideh: You will need two square metal pipes that you will place parallel to each other on top and bottom of the cooking grate of your grill lengthwise. The top pipe is for placing the tip of the skewers and the bottom one is for the handles. This is so the skewers are raised and the meat does not touch the hot grate, otherwise it will stick and fall right off.
- The coals are ready when they are gray and covered with ash.
- If you’re grilling vegetables it is always better to skewer them separate from the kebabs. I use thinner skewers for the vegetables because if the skewers are too wide the turgid vegetables such as green peppers will tear and fall apart.
- The vegetables take longer to grill than the meat, so if the space is limited, grill the vegetables first and keep them warm under an aluminum foil. If there is enough grilling surface start grilling the veggies first and halfway through grilling, start the kebabs.
- Place as many kebabs skewers as you can fit on the grill, leave some space between them. As soon as you are done arranging all the skewers, start turning the first skewer and keep turning the rest in the order that you have placed them on the grill. The reason for this quick turning is to cook both sides of the kebabs for a short time so the meat cooks and firms up all around and does not fall off the skewer. Do not overcook the kebabs because they are thin and tend to dry out. Turn the kebabs again until you get the doneness you desire. The kebabs should have a nice grilled color on the outside and no longer pink inside, but still very juicy.
You can serve this kebab both with bread or rice.
By Samira Pardis