Sunday, November 9, 2008

Kibbe Balls Recipe

Wonderful Kibbe balls recipe. Kibbe balls is an appetizer dish (mezzi) famous in Lebanese, Syrian, Jordanian and Palestinian restaurants.

Ingredients:


For the stuffing
  • 90g unsalted Butter
  • 60g pine nuts
  • 500g Onions, finely chopped
  • 200g finely minced Lamb, (from the leanest part of the leg)
  • 2 tsp ground Cinnamon
  • 2 tsp Lebanese 7 spice mixture or ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp finely ground black pepper
  • pinch Salt
For the kibbe
  • 200g fine Bulgur wheat
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
  • 500g finely minced Lamb, (from the leanest part of the leg)
  • 2 tsp ground Cinnamon
  • 2 tsp Lebanese 7-spice mixture or ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp finely ground black pepper
  • pinch Salt
  • melted Butter, for brushing
Preparation:
  1. For the stuffing: melt the butter in a deep frying pan and gently fry the pine nuts over a medium heat until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  2. Fry the onions in the same pan until soft and translucent. Add the minced lamb and cook until it loses all traces of pink, mashing and stirring with a spoon or fork so that it does not form lumps.
  3. Take off the heat and season with the cinnamon, spice mix, pepper and salt. Stir in the pine nuts and set aside.
  4. For the kibbe: wash the bulgur in several changes of cold water and drain well.
  5. Put the onion in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add the meat and process until well combined. Add the bulgur and pulse a few times to mix. Transfer to a bowl and add the cinnamon, spice mix, pepper and salt.
  6. Have a bowl of lightly salted water to hand. Mix the kibbé until the spices are well incorporated, using your hand and dipping it into salted water every now and then to moisten. Knead the meat mixture for about 3 minutes until you have a smooth paste. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
  7. Divide the kibbe into 20 balls, each the size of a large plum. Lightly moisten your hands and place a meat ball in the cup of one hand. With the index finger of your other hand burrow a hole into the meat ball while rotating it - to make the hollowing out easier and more even. You should end up with a thin shell resembling a topless egg. Take care to avoid piercing it.
  8. Spoon 1 ½ - 2 teaspoons of stuffing into the meat shell, gently pushing it in with your fingers. Pinch the open edges together then cup your free fingers over the top and shape into a ball with slightly pointed ends. Lay out on a non-stick baking sheet.
  9. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4.
  10. Brush the kibbe balls with melted butter and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until crisp and lightly golden. Serve hot, warm or at room temperature.

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