Dinner Lamb Lunch MiddleEastern

Lamb Kofta with Israeli Couscous Pilaf

Lamb Kofta with Pistachio Crust, Israeli Couscous and Mint Oil

I swear I can eat this Kofta everyday of the week: the combination of spices in the Kofta is truly amazing and I love the crispy texture of the Pistachio.

It matches beautifully with the Israeli Couscos Pilaf but you can also serve with a simple salad, rice or just bread.

Different from the normal Couscous, the Israeli couscous or Pearl Couscous,  has to be boiled until it gets soft.    It is very versatile and can be used to replace pasta and rice.

Lamb Kofta with Pistachio Crust, Israeli Couscous and Mint Oil 


Author: Rachel Elich     
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For the Kofta

    • 500g Lamb Mince 
    • For the Israeli Couscous Pilaf
    • 1/2 Cup Fresh Bread Crumbs
    • 1 Tablespoon Plain Flour
    • 1 egg
    • 50g Pistachio without shelves and crushed
    • 1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
    • 1/4 Teaspoon freshly grounded nutmeg
    • 1/4 Teaspoon grounded Cinnamon
    • 6 Cloves Crushed into powder
    • 1/3 Tespoon dried Oregano
    • 1/8 Teaspoon of Cayenne Pepper
    • 1/4 Teaspoon Black Pepper
    • 1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt or Sea Salt
    • 1/2 Teaspoon Sugar
    • 1/2 Tablespoon Olive Oil  + some for frying

    For the Israeli Couscous Pilaf

    • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
      Lamb Kofta with Pistachio Crust, Israeli Couscous and Mint Oil

    • 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
    • 1 small onion thinly diced
    • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
    • Pinch of cayenne pepper
    • 2 cups Israeli couscous
    • 2 1/2 Cups Homemade or good quality and salt reduced Chicken Stock
    • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    • 1 tablespoons coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
    •  A generous pinch of Cayenne Pepper 
    • Salt to taste.

    For the Mint Oil

    • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
    • 1/2 Cup Mint Leaves
    • Pinch of Salt and Pepper to taste 

    Making the Kofta 

    1. Add all ingredients, except for the Pistachio, to a large bowl and mix all very well with your hands until all incorporated. 
    2. Divide the meat in 8 balls.
    3. Put the crushed Pistachio in a bowl and one by one press the balls in the Pistachio, lightly coating them (no need to have all the surface coated).
    4. Heat the oven to 180 C.
    5. Lightly coat a frying pan with oil and heat it over high heat.
    6. Fry the Kofta in batches, a couple of minutes each side just to give it some color.
    7. Put the Koftas in a baking tray line with foil (just for the sake of neatness)
    8. Bake it for 10 min or to your liking. 

    Making the Coucous

    1. Bring the Chicken stock to boil in a small saucepan.
    2. In a medium saucepan heat the olive oil and the butter over medium heat.
    3. Add the onions and fry until it starts brown
    4. Stir in the cayenne pepper, black pepper and the cumin
    5. Add the Couscous and fry for a couple of minutes
    6. Add the Chicken Stock, bring it to boil and reduce the heat
    7. Let it simmer until couscous is soft and the chicken stock has been absorbed
    8. Remove from the heat, allow it to rest for 15 min.
    9. Taste the Salt and add more if you wish
    10. Stir in the parsley.

     Making the Mint Oil

    1. With a Mortar and Pestle crush the mint leaves and the black pepper (to taste) with the olive oil

      until you have a paste 

    2. Add salt to taste 
    3. Pass the paste through a sieve, with the help of the back of a spoon, being careful not to press too much the mint leaves so you will have a rich green oil

    Serve the Kofta on the Top of the Couscous and drizzle with Mint Oil

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