Korme Kofta – Afghan Lamb Meatballs

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Korme Kofta (Afghani Lamb Meatballs) is a classic example of Afghani cuisine. It is a main entree, of course, but Korme Kofta is typically accompanied by vegetable, rice, and fruits side dishes. Koftas can be made with seafood, poultry, or even grains, but this Korme Kofta is a national favorite and a time-honored authentic and traditional Afghani dish.

Korme Kofta

Korme Kofta (Photo Attributed to Author: Biswarup Ganguly)

Korme Kofta Recipe-

For the Meatballs-
For the Sauce-
  • 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 medium sized yellow onions, chopped fine
  • 20 oz. (625 ml) fresh water
  • 1 tbsp. tomato paste
  • ½ tsp. freshly ground turmeric root
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 4 medium sized potatoes, peeled and chopped into bite-sized chunks
  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the minced lamb with the finely chopped white onions, minced garlic, tomato paste, chopped cilantro, egg, freshly ground turmeric, sweet smoked paprika and pepper. Use you hands to shape the mixture into small balls – about the size of a golf ball. Set aside for now.
  2. Now make your sauce. In a heavy-duty and heavy bottomed skillet (bare cast iron works best) heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add in the finely chopped yellow onions and cook for about 4 minutes – until softened, fragrant and translucent.
  3. Add and stir in the water, tomato paste, ground turmeric and salt; cover the skillet with a tight-fitting lid and bring to mixture to a vigorous, rolling boil.
  4. Add the meatballs into the skillet; reduce the heat to medium-low, place tight-fitting lid back on, and cook for 1 hour.
  5. Now remove the lid, add in the quartered potatoes and cook, uncovered, for about 30 minutes – or until the potatoes and meatballs and are fully cooked, tenderized, and liquid has reduced to a thick sauce consistency.
  6. Serve your Korme Kofta right away, while nice and hot.

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