Twitpolpette: Kuru Köfte

Written by Katie Parla on April 19, 2011

This week I participated in a collaborative blog called Twitpolpette devoted to “polpette”, edible balls. Allow me to clarify. Polpette can be meatballs, bread balls, balls made from flaked fish, sweet dough balls, savory dough balls…this is beginning to sound like a Forrest Gump litany so I shall move on and simply refer you to the website for further clarificaiton.

Twitpolpette is an Italian language blog and I thought it would be nice to translate the recipe for kuru köfte (“dry” meatballs popular in Turkey) into English. I adapted this quick and easy recipe from the cookbook Contemporary Turkish Cuisine and procured the ingredients from some of Rome’s leading food purveyors. The ground lamb came from Carni Magini. I had the butcher add some extra fat and grind the meat twice. I made the breadcrumbs from a stale loaf of bread from Roscioli.

Though the Italian recipe on Twitpolpette serves 8, the ingredients below will serve four.

400g ground lamb
2 slices of stale bread
1 onion
1 whole egg
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp black pepper
salt, to taste
100ml extra virgin olive oil

Cut the crust off the bread and tear apart the stale interior. Grate a medium sized white onion. Combine the breadcrumbs and onion pulp with the ground lamb, egg, and seasonings in a large mixing bowl. Using your hands, mix until throughly combined.

Heat olive oil in a deep frying pan. Form elongated meatballs, around an inch and a half long with your hands. Cook the meatballs on two sides, turning gently with tongs, until they are well browned (around 8 minutes). When they are ready, drain momentarily on paper towels, then serve on a plate with salad or rice.

Variations on this recipe include using veal instead, or mixing lamb with veal. You could also add come finely chopped mint, parsley, or garlic to the mixture. If anything is unclear, I beseech you to let me know. I’ve said it before and I will say it again. I am terrible at editing and writing coherent recipes. On that uplifting note, enjoy!

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