Tandoori lamb kofta/kebab recipe

Spicy lamb mixture cooked until golden brown in the Tandoor.  Fire up your Tandoor about 30-40 minutes in advance of being ready to cook.

Main ingredients (enough for 4):

500 grams lamb mince

5 cloves fresh garlic

5cm piece of fresh ginger (peeled)

1/2 onion

2 tablespoons dry parsley leaves

0.5 teaspoon black pepper finely ground

1 tablespoon ground coriander

1.5 teaspoons ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground allspice

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

0.5-1 teaspoon of chilli powder (vary to taste)

1.5 teaspoons salt

Extra ingredients:

1-2 medium potatoes to act as heat shields during cooking the kofta

lemon wedges to serve

Combine all main ingredients (except the lamb mince) into a food processor and blitz to form a thick smooth paste.  Alternatively, chop finely all non-ground main ingredients (except the lamb mince) and then grind these with the ground spices in a mortar and pestle.  Knead the mince vigorously for about 15 minutes until it becomes very sticky and quite uniform in color.  Then combine mince and resulting paste into a bowl and mix thoroughly with hands, then allow to marinate for 3 hours in the refrigerator, overnight if possible.  Then divide mix into about two equal portions if using the larger SS2 Tandoor, or into about three equal portions if using the smaller SS1 Tandoor.  Compress a portion of mince around a skewer using your hands, being sure to leave a gap at the top (about 10-15cm) so that the the kofta does not stick out the top of the Tandoor, and a gap at the bottom (about 15-20cm) so that the kofta does not get too close to the embers in the Tandoor.  Cut the potato into half (or smaller if its a big potato) and slide a piece up each skewer until just under the kofta mix to act as a heat shield during cooking (see pictures).  The potato also helps with stopping the kofta slipping down the skewer as it cooks.  You can make the kofta thinner of thicker as desired.  If you go thinner you will need to use more skewers.  If you go too thick the meat may have a tendency to slip down the skewer under its own weight when cooking, or even fall off!

Place the skewers in your pre-warmed Tandoor and close the lid to be adjacent the skewers  Cooking time of the koftas will vary depending on the temperature of the Tandoor.  As a guide, they will take only about 15 minutes to cook in the Tandoor at about 240oC.  If the Tandoor gets too hot, simply take the lid off for a while.  Try cook them long enough to get a tasty nicely brown outer skin.  If they are cooked too long they can sometimes get a little dry to eat. 

Squeeze a little lemon juice over the cooked kofta’s and serve with your favorite accompaniments.


Kofta mix compressed onto skewers (with potato heat shields) ready to be cooked

Kofta’s (with potato heat shields) cooking in Tandoor

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