By Sam | 6 February, 2018


Whether it be Kofte, Kofta, Kefte and so on, these Middle Eastern meatballs are fragrant, smokey and delicious. Served with an unctuous tomato and roasted red pepper sauce and dressed with tahini yoghurt. Whether you’re looking for a superb weeknight meal or a show-stopping party dish, these Turkish meatballs are a perfect choice.

  • Author: Sam



800g Minced Lamb

1 Small Onion, finely diced

A Garlic Clove, minced

3 tsp Dried Barberries

1 Small Bunch of Parsley, roughly chopped

A Small Bunch of Coriander, roughly chopped

½ tsp Smoked Paprika

½ tsp Ground Cumin

Generous Pinch of Salt and Pepper

½ tsp Sumac


250g Thick Greek Yoghurt

3 Large Red Bell Peppers

¼ tsp Smoked Paprika

1 x 400g Tinned Plum Tomatoes

1 Small Onion, finely choped

¼ tsp Ground Cumin

A Garlic Clove, minced

¼ tsp Ground Cinnamon

¼ tsp Ground Coriander

1 Small Bunch of Parsley, roughly chopped

¼ tsp Ground Cloves

1 Small Bunch of Coriander, roughly chopped

Generous Pinch of Salt and Pepper


250g Thick Greek Yoghurt

3 tsp. Tahini

Juice of ½ a Lemon

1 Garlic Clove, minced

40ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Generous Pinch of Salt



To begin with, combine the yoghurt, minced garlic, tahini, lemon juice, olive oil and salt and thoroughly mix together. Refrigerate it until needed.


1. At first, preheat the oven to 180 °C.

2. Place the halved red peppers skin-side up on a baking tray and drizzle with olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Then, roast in the oven for 30 minutes or until the skin on the peppers is starting to blister.

Afterwards, I leave them to stand for no more than 5 minutes in a bowl with cling film over it. The peppers will steam slightly and then removing the skin will be much easier whilst they are still warm.

3. Once the peppers have cooled off, dice them and set them aside. Then, place a large pan over a medium heat and add in the onion, sweating the onion for 3 minutes until starting to colour. Following with the minced garlic and the ground spices, and cooking off for a further 2 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent the onions from burning.

4. Next, add the roast peppers to the pan with the tinned tomatoes and give the mixture a good stir, breaking up the tomatoes as you do. At this point, leave the sauce to gently simmer for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes have fully broken down to give an even consistency.

5. Using a hand blender or food processor, blitz the mixture until a smooth silky sauce is achieved, season to taste and add the chopped herbs. As much as possible, keep it warm until ready to serve.


1. Firstly, place a frying pan over a medium heat with a lug of olive oil. Once hot, add the diced onion and garlic and sauté for 3-4 minutes until softened and beginning to colour. Then, remove the pan from the heat and leave to cool.

2. Secondly, place the minced meat into a large mixing bowl and break apart the mince as much as possible so that it sits loosely in the bowl. Season the lamb with the spices and salt and black pepper ensuring the meat is evenly seasoned. Add the cooked onions and chopped herbs, mixing together thoroughly until evenly combined.

3. Then, to form the Kofte, grease your hands with a little oil and take a small handful of the lamb and roll until you have a ball roughly the size of a golf ball. Flatten the lamb ball slightly and transfer to a lightly oiled plate, repeat until all of the mixture is used up.

4. To cook them, place a large griddle pan over a medium-high heat and brush with a little oil. Afterwards, add the Kofte to the pan and cook on each side for about 3 minutes or as soon as they are cooked through to your preference.

If working in batches transfer the cooked Kofte to a warm bake tray, then cover with foil and leave in a just-turned-off oven. In addition, make sure to transfer any juices from the resting Kofte into the pepper sauce before serving!

5. Finally, transfer the meatballs to a large serving dish with the pepper sauce, garlic yoghurt, chopped herbs, rose petals and pomegranate seeds. Without delay, serve with a fresh salad and grains of your choice, such as bulgur wheat. Without a doubt, this will be a meal you will not forget!


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