Seekh kababs probably made their way to India from Persia. They are made with minced meat that has been lightly spiced and grilled over charcoal fire. I ate seekh kababs for the first time when my cousin who was visiting us in Bangalore, brought them over from Fanoos, a restaurant that still operates near Johnson Market in Richmond Town. They were delicious! However that was the only time I ate seekh kababs before I left India. My parents were wary of them since one could not predict what went into them, there was always the fear that they contained organ meat or other meat such as beef that was not eaten at home. I started experimenting with kababs when I started grilling and here is a recipe that I came up with. In a classic recipe, spices and seasonings are finely ground so that one only experiences the texture of the meat. In this recipe, you can taste the onions and herbs that are chopped finely, so along with the meat, you can taste the onions and herbs.
- Ground Meat (Chicken/Turkey/Lamb) - 1 lb
- Onion - 1 medium size
- Green Chillies - 5
- Garlic - 4 cloves
- Ginger - 1 inch
- Cilantro - 1 small bunch
- Mint - few leaves
- Garam Masala powder - 1/2 tsp
- Oil - 1 tbsp
- Salt - to taste
Chop the onions, ginger, garlic, cilantro, green chillies and mint leaves finely. A food processor can also be used.
In a bowl, mix the chopped ingredients along with salt, garam masala powder and oil.
Add the ground meat to the bowl and mix well.
Marinate the mixture in a refrigerator for a couple of hours. I normally let it marinate overnight.
The kababs can be grilled on a charcoal grill or baked in an oven. I used an oven this time.
Preheat the oven to 400 F (approx 200 C).
Shape the meat into cylindrical kababs and place them on a grill with a tray underneath to collect the drippings. Alternatively, you can use skewers.
Bake the kababs in the oven for about 15 minutes. Flip them over and let them bake for an additional 10 minutes.
If you like to brown the kababs a little, you can broil them for a couple of minutes.
Serve hot with green chutney, chopped onions and lime wedges.
- Aparna usually oils the inside of a ziplock quart bag and then puts the meat in the bag, cuts one of the edges and squeezes the bag to force the ground meat mixture into kababs of desired length and size. Please remember to cut the edge of the bag depending on the diameter of the kababs that you desire.
- The time to cook the kababs will vary with your oven, diameter of the kababs and the meat used. I used ground turkey for this recipe.