Many South Asian menus are incomplete unless you have some variety of kebabs. Kebabs are made from various cooked meats. There are so many varieties of kebabs people enjoy. They can be prepared with chicken, lamb, beef, turkey or seafood. This particular variety of kebabs are called Shami kebabs. It is a minced meat patty that just melts in your mouth. Usually it’s made with split yellow pea lentils that have to be soaked and need some time to cook with the meat. But recently I have been making these with canned chickpeas. Now by all means I am not calling this recipe authentic. This is just my version of these kebabs. By using the canned chickpeas this recipe comes together much faster. The cooked ground meat mixture gets processed thru a food processor/meat grinder to give it a very smooth texture. So kids love these kebabs because of the texture, it’s not a chewy consistency like a burger. These also freeze very well and makes a great protein option for meal prepping. You can also follow the same recipe and just add soaked or boiled yellow split peas.
- 1lb ground beef
- 4-5 med. garlic cloves, minced
- 1" piece of ginger, minced or grated
- 1 med. onion, chopped
- 2 tsp. ground cumin
- 2 tsp. ground coriander
- 1 tsp. garam masala
- ½ tsp. chili powder adjust to taste
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp. cumin seeds
- cinnamon stick
- 2 cloves
- 2 brown cardamom
- ½ tsp salt, adjust to taste
- 1 cup canned chickpeas (or ½ cup soaked or boiled yellow split peas)
- small bunch of fresh cilantro
- 1-2 eggs for pan frying the patties
- In a heavy bottom pot. Add ground beef, garlic, ginger,onion, all powder and whole spices and chickpeas add 1 cup of water. Cook on med to low heat til the meat and peas are fully cooked. Make sure beef is no longer pink. Cook this mixture until all the water has dried up. This can take about 15-20 min or a little longer with the lentils. This is very important because if there is water in the mixture you won't be able to form the patties.
- Once the mixture is cooked allow to cool a little. Remove all the large whole spices like cinnamon stick, bay leaf, skin of cardamom leave the seeds. Transfer mixture to a meat grinder or a food processor. Blend till mixture is smooth and not chunky.
- Transfer mixture to a bowl. At this time add chopped cilantro and taste to adjust salt. Mix well.
- If mixture is too warm or soft to form patties let it sit out on counter or refrigerate for a little bit. Once the mixture is cooled form disk shaped patties. You may have to wet hands so mixture does not stick to hands. (once shaped you can freeze like this in zip lock bag)
- Heat a few tablespoons of oil in a heavy-based frying pan over a medium heat. Whisk egg in small bowl. Dip the patties in egg both sides. Fry the patties in batches until golden-brown on both sides. (can also be frozen after this)
- Enjoy these patties as a burger with favorite toppings. Have with rice, naan or roti.
Once patties are formed you can freeze in freezer safe container/Ziploc bags. Just make sure to have parchment paper in between if stacking.
You can also fry than freeze as well. Defrost in fridge than microwave or pan heat.
You don't have to use egg with frying use breadcrumbs or fry them without both.
Cooking time is not long, but do give time to cool and grind, form patties and fry. So plan accordingly.