Lebanese cuisine is a delicious change from your routine monotonous meals. Take a break and prepare these easy-to-make spicy Lebanese koftes. Add toasted pitas, some sharp pickles, and a cooling tahini yogurt dip on the side, and the dinner is served.
Ingredients (For 8 pieces)
• British lamb mince with around 20% fat, 400 gm • British beef mince, 400 gm • Halved red onions, 2 • Crushed garlic cloves, 4 • Ground cumin, 1 tbsp • Ground Coriander, 2 tsp • Ground ginger, ½ tsp • Ground cinnamon, 1 tsp • Ground allspice, ¼ tsp • Cayenne pepper, ¼ tsp • Very finely chopped fresh parsley, a large handful
• Blend the red onions into a paste and squeeze out excess water as much as possible, using a clean J-cloth. • Take a large mixing bowl, put the minced meats first. Then add the squeezed onions, crushed garlic, and all other spices and seasoning.
• Mix well for 2-3 minutes. Knead the mince with your hand.
• Divide the marinated mixture into equal portions. Then make each portion into long sausage shapes around soaked bamboo or long metal skewers. Then cover the raw koftes and chill it for an hour.
• Heat the grill to a high temperature. Take a large foil-lined baking tray and lightly oil it. Lay the skewers on it. Grill for 4-5 minutes on each side. The meat can be griddled or barbequed also. The koftes should be completely cooked through in the middle, with a little charred outside. Take out and serve hot.
• Toasted pitta bread • Garlic yogurt tahini dip • Shredded white cabbage • Scorched green chilies/pickles • Chili sauce • Lemon wedges
• The mince can be prepared 24 hours ahead to prepare the dish in advance. Just keep it covered in the fridge, and be careful not to add salt, as it can toughen the meat. When you’re ready to cook, add the salt and mix it well before starts shaping.
• Don’t use super-lean mince. Lean mince may not cling to the skewers properly and the koftes can be dry once cooked.
• Rub some oil or melted butter on your palms before shaping the mince, to prevent the meat from sticking to your hands.
Backpacking around the world is a great way to see as much of this planet of ours as possible. When backpacking, learning about different cultures and seeing some of the most incredible sights are par for the course. However, there are some lessons that all backpackers learn after taking their first trip into a foreign land.
One of the first things you’ll realize when staying in a cheap hostel is that you should have brought earplugs. Popping some earplugs in your pack will ensure that you can sleep through the loudest of snoring and passing wind. Sleep is going to be very important on your trip, and you don’t want anything stopping you from getting a good night’s sleep.
Don’t Pack So Much
If you haven’t been traveling before, you may end up packing enough supplies for a small army. You quickly learn that you don’t need so much stuff, and anything you need can be bought pretty easily. You can wash your clothes practically anywhere you stay, and three pairs of shoes are just not required.
Not Everything is Online
The beauty of traveling to a far and distant land is discovering things for yourself. Many of a backpacker’s best stories come from when they got lost and found the perfect little restaurant. Trawling Tripadvisor for a good place to eat might help you avoid the bad places, but you could be missing out on the real gems too.
Free Doesn’t Always Mean Free
If something sounds too good to be true, it usually is. The same applies when you’re backpacking, and those super cheap taxis usually include a detour to some shop you have no interest in visiting. Free walking tours come with the hidden cost of tipping your tour guide, generally after being guilt-tripped into it. When backpacking, it’s important to realize nothing comes for free.
Backpackers, make a note of these important lessons before you set off!