Lamb kofte and herby couscous with citrus and pomegranate dressing

I made this a few weeks ago, after we’d been sent pomegranates in the fortnightly fruit and veg box (which I would generally recommend – it does expose us to a wider range of fruit and veg than I would eat otherwise).
I’d also picked up some reduced lamb mince from Associated Dairies which was just sitting in our (small) freezer waiting for some inspiration to hit. It was the large stockpile of couscous which eventually triggered a Middle Eastern train of thought and so after a little Googling, I came to this. The kofte recipe is an adaption of a Jamie Oliver one (but I don’t like pistachios, so left them out) and the couscous recipe comes from BBC Good Food.

Lamb kofte
500g lamb
2 heaped tablespoons of fresh thyme leaves (I think that I used the remnants of a ‘Herbes de Provence’ packet
1 tablespoon ground chilli
1 tablespoon ground cumin
4 tablespoons sumac if available, or finely grated zest of 1 lemon (yep, I went with the lemon)
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
A good handful of pistachio nuts (yuk, no!)

1. Blitz lamb in food processor with thyme, chilli, cumin and sumac, a little salt and pepper. Repeat until it looks like mince.
2. Shape into balls/four pieces (as you will).
3. Griddle.

Herby couscouse with citrus and pomegranate dressing

200g couscous
150g pack of pomegranate seeds (I used 2 pomegranates, which are a bit of a pain to deseed, but there is a knack to it*)
Handful of chopped herbs e.g. coriander
Juice of 1 orange
2 tbsp each white wine vinegar and olive oil

1. Add 200ml boiling water to the couscous (in a shallow bowl), cover (e.g. clingfilm) and leave for 5 mins.
2. Ruffle with a fork to separate the grains, then stir through the pomegranate seeds and herbs.
3. Make the dressing by mixing together the orange juice, white wine vinegar and olive oil and then stirring into the couscous. Season well with salt (it says, but I don’t remember adding salt!) and serve.

Delicious and lovely and spicy and warm.

* Deseeding a pomegranate is quite fiddly and can be quite messy apparently. The trick is to deseed while holding the pomegranate in a bowl of water. The seeds will sink, the pith will rise (and can then be removed e.g. with a tea strainer). Much easier.

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