Le Creuset Recipe Chicken Koftas

Popular in Middle Eastern and Indian cooking, a kofta is a savoury ball of spiced minced meat or vegetables, grilled and traditionally eaten inside pitta bread pockets together with a yogurt and fresh herb dip and vegetable salads. This recipe will make enough to fill 4 pitta pockets.

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 8 minutes

Serves 2-4


For the kofta kebabs
500g minced lamb
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 garlic clove, crushed
½ teaspoon crushed dried chilli flakes
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
35g lightly toasted pine nuts

For the vegetable kebabs
8 whole vine cherry tomatoes
1 thick slice red pepper, cut into 8 small pieces
1 thick slice yellow pepper, cut into 8 small pieces
50g slice aubergine, cut into 8 small pieces
1 small courgette (approximately 100g), cut across into 1cm thick slices
1 small red onion, cut into 8 small chunks
1 tablespoon olive oil

For the cacik salad
150g piece cucumber
175g Greek style natural yogurt
1 garlic clove, crushed
The leaves from 3 sprigs fresh mint, finely shredded

For the fresh tomato & rocket salad
2 spring onions, trimmed and thinly sliced
125g vine cherry tomatoes, coarsely chopped
½ small red chilli, seeded and very finely chopped
15g rocket leaves, coarsely chopped, plus extra to serve
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar

To serve
4 pitta breads
Rocket leaves

1. For the kofta kebabs, put all the ingredients into a mixing bowl with ½ teaspoon of salt and some pepper and mix together well with your hands. Divide the mixture into either 8 evenly sized pieces and shape into short stumpy sausages or 16 evenly sized pieces and roll into walnut sized balls. Thread onto four thin 20cm metal skewers.
2. For the vegetable kebabs, put all the prepared vegetables into a bowl with the olive oil and some seasoning and toss together well. Thread the vegetables alternately onto another four 20cm skewers.
3. For the salads simply mix each set of ingredients together in separate bowls and season to taste. Spoon into 2 Stoneware Petite Casseroles to serve.
4. Heat the grill over a medium heat. Lay the skewers side by side on the grill and cook for 8 minutes, turning every 2 minutes until cooked through and nicely browned.
5. To serve, lightly toast the pitta breads and slit them open along one side to make a pocket. Take care of the steam. Fill each one with some of the rocket leaves. Lay one kofta kebab and one vegetable kebab inside each pocket and slide out the skewers. Spoon in some of the cacik salad and tomato and rocket salad and serve straight away.

Cook’s Notes

These kebabs can also be successfully made with minced beef. The addition of 1 teaspoon of nigella/kalonji seeds to the mixture goes particularly well with the beef.