I have a serious weakness for Middle Eastern spices!
How about you?
Because there’s just something in them that make me salivate right away. It’s like smelling caramelised onions. And what better type of meat goes better with those spices than lamb! Look at these savory lamb kofta kebabs below.
Lamb Kofta Skewers with Harissa & Couscous
I love harissa paste.
Have you heard of harissa before? It’s a Tunisian spicy paste I use quite often when cooking.
Harissa is a flavorful chili pepper paste that consists of dried red chili peppers, garlic, olive oil and a bunch of toasted spices such as caraway seeds, coriander seeds and cumin seeds. You can even make harissa paste at home from scratch if you like, it’s easy and fun!
If you like the sound of that, then I would like you to take a look at the harissa paste recipe by The Spruce Eats. I’ve tried that recipe before and it’s a winner. Absolutely great!
You can use this harissa flavor bomb in stews, soups and meat marinades. Or add extra olive oil and dip some bread in it! It’s just delicious.
Do you also like harissa? Then you surely must take a look at my spicy harissa spaghetti for instance.
That’s hands down one of my husband’s most favorite pasta dishes.
And how about couscous?
Do you often cook couscous? I love it to bits. It’s light and fluffy, and that fine texture of the couscous grains in your mouth is very pleasant. If you prepare couscous the right way of course.
It took me a while to find out how to cook couscous properly. Here’s how to do it!
- 6 oz dry couscous (170 g)
- 1 cup vegetable stock (240 ml)
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- 9 oz lamb mince (250 g)
- 1 tbsp spicy harissa paste
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp paprika powder
- a handful fresh cilantro chopped
- a handful fresh mint chopped
- 2 tbsp orange zest grated
- 2 oz fresh cucumber (55 g), diced
- a handful canned chickpeas
- 2 tbsp red onion chopped
- 2 tbsp raisins chopped
- garlic powder
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp unsweetened yogurt
- olive oil
- First of all, make couscous. Bring the vegetable stock to a boil. Then pour the dry couscous in a heat resistant bowl and add the hot stock.
- Place the butter on top and cover the couscous. Let it sit for 10 minutes. In the meantime add the lamb mince to a bowl and sprinkle with half of the cumin, half of the coriander and half of the paprika. Then add the harissa and season with some garlic powder and salt.
- Knead the lamb mince well.
- Then divide the lamb mince in 4 portions. Shape it into even balls (or any shape you want) and push a skewer through each of them. Place the skewers in the fridge for now. Then stir the warm couscous well. The stock should be fully absorbed by now. Then let the couscous cool down fully. Add the freshly chopped mint and cilantro and the rest of the spices.
- Stir well and add the orange zest, chopped raisins and diced cucumber.
- Season with a pinch of salt. Then add the chickpeas, red onion, a drizzle of olive oil and lemon juice.
- Stir the couscous well. Check the seasoning and add extra spices or condiments. Place the couscous in the fridge. Grill, fry or bake the lamb skewers until cooked through. Then divide the couscous over deep plates and top with the lamb skewers. Finish with a tablespoon of yogurt. Serve.