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Here's something that might seem exotic and fancy, but is simple and easy, thanks to a few innovative techniques, flavors, and spices. The kofte cook under the broiler, and the couscous is pretty much set and forget.
3 Tbsp ghee or butter
2 Tbsp Tunisian Preserved Lemon, minced
2 tsp D'vora
2 tsp Shabazi N38
2 cups uncooked fine couscous
2 pounds of ground lamb, beef, or a mix
2 large shallots, minced
3 Tbsp fresh spearmint leaves, thinly sliced
2 tsp Shawarma West
1/2 cup minced chives or scallion greens
1 1/2 cups cracker crumbs
In the widest pot you can find that has a lid add 2 1/2 cups of water and all of the couscous ingredients, except for the couscous. Salt to taste, you'll want it lightly salty. Start bringing the water to a boil.
In the meantime mix together all of the kofte ingredients except the olive oil. Set up a rack right under your broiler and get a sheet pan out.
Oil up you hands and form small kofte, they can be irregular. Place them evenly on the sheet pan. When they are ready slide them under the broiler, and at the same time add the couscous to the boiling water, stir well, then turn off the heat and cover the pot.
Once the kofte are cooked on one side (about 4 minutes), give them a flip.
When the kofte are done the couscous will also be ready, give it a fluff with a fork, remove to a platter, and plate the kofte all around. Serve with fresh lemon.
• Leftover couscous is a great base for a salad, just add chopped vegetables, olive oil, lemon, and salt to taste. It's kind of a spin on tabbouleh.
• Sometimes I like to add a bit of cheese to the kofte. It's a nice addition and adds a great flavor and texture.
• The kofte are pretty juicy on their own, but you can always serve them with some toum.
Food images and recipe © Christian Leue
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