Kibbeh is the national dish of Lebanon. The basic Kibbeh is made with minced lamb, mutton or beef mixed with spices, minced onion and burghul. It can be eaten raw, fried, baked, or grilled. Another type of Kibbeh is Potato Kibbeh which uses boiled mashed potatoes (instead of meat) and adds fresh mint to the mix as well. Below, I provide recipes for two of the most common Kibbeh preparations – the Fried (which many of you will recognize) and the baked.
• 1 cup fine burghul
• 1 meduim onion, peeled
• 1lb (450g) ground beef or lamb
• 2 tsp Salt
Put the burghul in a large bowl and cover it with cold water. Let it soak for about 30 minutes then drain in a strainer while pressing down to remove as much water as possible. Return to the bowl.
Cut the onion into quarters and puree in the food processor.
Add the onion, beef (or lamb) and salt to the burghul and knead the mixture with your hands till smooth. If it becomes too sticky, add a little ice cold water till it gets smooth.
NOTE: For Raw Kibbeh cut the burghul amount by half and add 1tsp of ground Cumin to the mixture when you add the salt.
Fried Stuffed Kibbeh
Makes about 20 pieces
• 1 Recipe Kibbeh
• 2 cups meat Stuffing
• 1 small bowl of water with ice cubes in it
• Oil for frying
Making these stuffed torpedo shaped pies takes some practice and the first few you make will probably look odd or fall apart. Keep trying, and once you get the hang of it, it will become quite easy. Here are the steps to making a perfect fried Kibbeh.
Make the shell by forming a piece of the Kibbeh into a small ball, the size of a golf ball. Rub your hands with a little ice water if the ball becomes sticky while you are rolling it between your palms.