Kofta

Köfte with Pistachios and Tahini Sauce
Photo: © ZUBIN SCHROFF

Kofta represents a number of different (but similar) dishes that span across many cultures—from Asia to the Middle East. Usually, the recipe consists of ground meat mixed with spices and formed into balls. These kofta ideas showcase the range of variations, from cod kofta to ground lamb kebabs.

01 of 05

Fish Kofta Sandwiches

Fish Kofta Sandwiches
© Adrian Gaut

Chopped fresh cod is mixed with lots of seasonings and aromatics and formed into a sausage shape before grilling for a supertasty take on the Middle Eastern classic skewered meat patties.

02 of 05

Grilled Beef-and-Lamb Köfte

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Because they're small and oval-shaped, Turkey's kofte are like a cross between a meatball and a hamburger. These kofte, which master butcher Veysel Direk makes at Dukkan butcher shop, are juicy and simply flavored with onion and parsley.

03 of 05

Red Lentil Köfte with Tomato-Cucumber Salad

Red Lentil Köfte with Tomato-Cucumber Salad
© Maura McEvoy

This recipe was inspired by the incredibly moist lentil patties called kufte that Ana Sortun first tried in Istanbul at Ferda Erdinc's vegetarian restaurant, Zencefil. The kufte here are fried, but they can also be served grilled, baked, or "raw."

04 of 05

Ground Lamb and Shallot Kebabs with Pomegranate Molasses

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Burhan Cagdas makes ground-meat kebabs (kofta) from hand-chopped lamb mixed with diced lamb-tail fat. In place of the fat, Paula Wolfert uses crème fraîche, which keeps the meat rich-tasting and meltingly tender.

05 of 05

Köfte with Pistachios and Tahini Sauce

Köfte with Pistachios and Tahini Sauce
© ZUBIN SCHROFF

These meatballs are half lamb, half beef and are peppered with crunchy, toasted pistachios.

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