Recipe: Lamb, pine nuts and tahini kebabs


I like to serve these kebabs with my version of a lemon, chilli and garlic sauce that is served in the hummus joints in Israel. I think this sauce is perfect for these kebabs. To make it, blitz 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, 2 green chilli peppers, 4 garlic cloves, the juice of 1½ lemons, a teaspoon each of ground cumin and flaked sea salt in a food processor until smooth. If you really want to impress your guests brush this sauce over the kebabs the second they leave the grill.

Serves: 12


● 2 large white onions, finely chopped

● 80ml extra virgin olive oil

● 2kg very coarse lamb mince (ask the butcher to grind once), or 1.5kg beef mince and 500g lamb mince

● 10 crushed garlic cloves

● 2 cups mixed parsley and mint, coarsely chopped

● 2 tbsp ground cumin

● 1 tbsp ground cinnamon

● 2 tsp ground cardamom

● 200g pine nuts, toasted in the oven at 180°C for 10 minutes

● 240ml superior quality tahini

● 4 tsp flaked sea salt

● 2 tsp coarsely ground black pepper


● Heat a pan and fry the onion with the olive oil slowly for 12 minutes until brown and caramelised. Leave to cool.

● Mix the minced meat, onions, garlic, herbs, spices, pine nuts, salt and pepper and tahini well with your hands for at least 10 minutes.

● Use your hand to form small kebabs like mini burgers.

● Refrigerate.

● Grill over very hot barbecue or grill – as they are small they don't need a long grilling time, 2 minutes each side will do nicely.

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