Adapted from a recipe by CJ Katz, www.cjkatz.com this recipe for Beef & Lentil Kefta Meatballs serves up meatballs with a Middle Eastern twist. Make ahead, bake and freeze meatballs for up to 3 months if you like. Instead of cooking in the oven, meatballs can also be cooked in a grill basket on the barbecue by indirect heat (i.e. burner turned off under the grill basket, lid closed).
Recipe and image courtesy of CJ Katz (full rights purchase).
- ½ cup small brown lentils, cooked and cooled*
- 500 g lean or medium ground beef
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 onion, peeled and grated
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp paprika
- Finely grated rind of half a small lemon
- Pepper, to taste
- 8 naan or pita, warmed
- Shredded lettuce
- Shredded or julienne cut carrot
- Cucumber Yogurt Sauce (recipe follows)
- In a large bowl, combine the cooled lentils, ground beef, minced garlic, grated onion, cumin, cinnamon, salt, paprika, grated lemon rind and pepper. Mix very well with your hands.
- Roll the mixture into approx. twenty-six 1 ½” balls, placing on a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet.
- Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, in a 400°F oven until cooked through, when several meatballs register 160°F (71°C) when tested with a digital thermometer.
- To serve, tuck 3 to 4 meatballs into each warmed naan or pita; top with shredded lettuce, carrot and Cucumber Yogurt Sauce.