September 26, 2011

Turkish-Style Lamb and Shrimp Patties with Tomato-Yogurt Sauce

I saw a recipe awhile back in Bon Appetit that featured small kebabs made with ground lamb and chopped shrimp, which the author described as something of a Middle Eastern take on "surf and turf."   The idea sounded different but nonetheless pretty good to me, but rather than make little appetizer-sized skewers, I went with something a bit larger.

In terms of technique, there isn't really much to these.  Add some chopped shrimp to the lamb, toss in some grated onions, herbs and seasonings, shape the mixture into whatever shape you like (I went with long shapes, which would fit nicely on a pita bread, but circular patties would work just fine, too).   Then toss them on the grill and cook them until they're cooked through.  The result:  a rich, juicy, delicious taste treat like nothing you've ever had. 

As I said, these would go great on a pita, but I didn't have any pita around, so I served them up with a tasty yogurt sauce.   They were just fine that way, too.  On or off the pita, this surf/turf combo is a winner.

Turkish-Style Lamb and Shrimp Patties with Tomato-Yogurt Sauce

yield - 6-8 servings

2 1/2         teaspoons minced garlic
2               teaspoons kosher salt
1 1/4         pound ground lamb
1               pound large shrimp, peeled, deveined and
                   coarsely chopped
1/2            cup + 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1/3            cup grated red onion
2               teaspoons ground cumin
1/2            teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2            teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1               cup plain Greek-style yogurt
1               small tomato, diced
1               tablespoon freshly-squeezed lemon juice
1               teaspoon chopped fresh mint
                 additional kosher salt and black pepper
1               tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

Sprinkle the kosher salt over the minced garlic, smearing together to make a paste.  Mix garlic paste with lamb, shrimp, cilantro, onion, cumin, red pepper flakes and black pepper.  Shape the lamb mixture as desired.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Mix together yogurt, tomato, lemon juice, mint and additional kosher salt and black pepper in a bowl.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. 

Remove the lamb patties from the fridge.  Prepare grill with a medium-hot fire and direct- and indirect-heat areas.   Brush the lamb patties on both sides with olive oil, then grill over direct heat for 6 minutes.  Turn the patties, grill on the other side an additional 6 minutes, then move them to the cooler part of the grill and cook until cooked through (another 5-6 minutes).  Serve the lamb-shrimp patties with the yogurt sauce.

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