If you’re ready for a break from burgers, try Kefta kebabs. These Moroccan-style grilled meatballs are easier to grill when you thread them on skewers. If you’re using bamboo skewers, to keep the exposed ends from burning, soak the skewers in water for about 30 minutes before threading a patty onto each one—or just use metal skewers. You can also skip the skewers and use a flat grilling basket to make cooking and flipping the patties easier. Use six flatbreads, each stuffed with 2 patties, or 4 flatbreads, each stuffed with 3 patties, depending on your crowd and their appetites.
Serves 4 to 6
1-1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1-1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1-1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup minced onion
3 tbsp minced parsley
3 tbsp minced mint
2 tsp minced garlic
3/4 lb ground lamb
3/4 lb ground beef
4 or 6 flatbreads, such as naan or pita
2 firm ripe tomatoes
2 romaine lettuce hearts
Tzatziki, for drizzling
- Combine the spice mix ingredients in a mixing bowl. Stir in the onion, garlic, and parsley until everything is well blended.
- Add the beef and lamb and use your hands, with spread fingers, to blend everything together. Don’t knead or compress the meat too much to keep your kefta from getting tough.
- Divide the mixture into four equal portions in the bowl, and then form each portion into three oval patties, about 1” x 3”.
- Arrange the patties on a clean Styrofoam butcher tray or a piece of cardboard covered in foil, wrap with plastic wrap, and freeze. Pack the frozen kefta in your cooler just before you leave, right from the freezer.
- Separate and wash the lettuce leaves and the mint sprigs and wrap them in a damp paper towel in a resealable plastic bag. Refrigerate until you’re ready to pack your cooler.
- Wrap the flatbreads in a double layer of foil and refrigerate.
- In the morning, check the kefta in the cooler: If still frozen, put the pack on top of the ice in the cooler so it starts to thaw. If you plan on serving any sides, make sure everything is prepared before you start cooking kefta. Slice the cucumber, tomato and onion.
- When you’re ready to eat, put the foil-wrapped flatbreads in a medium covered pot over low heat on a camp stove, or bury it in the coolest part of a live campfire, for a few minutes.
- Build a fire in a grill, or heat a skillet over a camp stove. Grill or cook the kefta for 4 to six minutes on each side, until the patties are cooked through.
- Wrap 2 or 3 patties in each warm flatbread, along with some cucumber slices, lettuce and tomato. Drizzle with tzatziki and serve more tzatziki on the side.
TRY IT WITH
Instead of making these as a sandwich, you can set out a whole spread, with the kefta, hummus, tzatziki, tabouleh, and a big Greek salad made with lettuce, red onion, crumbled feta, kalamata olives, oregano, mint and vinaigrette. Slice the warm flatbread into wedges and serve it on the side.