Kibbeh Patties

Yesterday, my husband and I were trying to decide where to go for dinner. “You know, what I really feel like eating is a big Greek type salad. With onions and feta and red wine vinaigrette,” I said.

We didn’t end up getting that last night, but I did make something in a similar vein for dinner tonight. This is one of my standby meals, and has been ever since my friend A. cooked up something similar for me one night. It’s quick, easy and delicious.

First, I get some ground lamb from Danny Rohrer, who sells meats at my local farmers market in Shepherdstown, WV. (Danny and his lamb can also be found at some markets in the Frederick area, I believe including the flagship on Baughman’s Lane on Saturday mornings.) Then I cook some bulgur wheat–roughly the same volume as the amount of lamb. My local supermarkets do not generally carry plain bulgur wheat, so I’ve purchased tabbouleh mix and simply discarded the spice packet with no issues. I buzz some onions and parsley in the Cuisinart, then add the bulgur and buzz again. I break up the meat into the Cuiz bowl and buzz to combine everything. I scoop out the meat-grain mix into a big bowl and use my hands to form oblong patties. Salt them generously on both sides. I fry these in a cast-iron pan until they’re well-browned on both sides (I like the crispy edges.) This is the closest thing I make to kibbeh.

I always make some tzatziki to go alongside, just Greek yogurt mixed with garlic and some shredded, salted, drained cucumbers. I toast some whole-wheat pitas in the lamb pan (you may have to pour off some of the excess grease first). And then I make my big Greek-style salad, arrange the pita points on the side, and plop a couple kibbeh patties on top. A shake of red wine vinaigrette and some generous dollops of tzatziki on top and I have a terrific, complete summertime dinner. Ahhh.

You can also put the kibbeh patties into a pita bread with the tzatziki, lettuce, tomato and tomatoes to make a nice sandwich. Or include the same stuff plus a squirt of hot sauce in a wrap for portable eating. My son likes them dunked in ketchup, but I do not endorse this method of kibbeh consumption–I merely report its existence.

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