Keftedes (Greek Meatballs)

I originally posted posted this on March 24, 2009. Since then I have made this recipe at least a dozen times. These Greek Meatballs are a family favorite because of the unique spice combination of dill and cumin. Therefore, I thought updated pictures were in order. As I mentioned in the previous post, I visited Greek Town in Detroit, Michigan several times throughout my "youth."  I probably tasted lamb for the first time in my life at one of the  Greek restaurants in Detroit.  Because of my love for Greek food, I purchased a cook book called The Book of Greek Cooking by Lesley Mackley (HPBooks, 1993).  The recipe from this book that has become a family favorite - Keftedes a.k.a Greek Meatballs.

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Keftedes (my version - adapted from The Book of Greek Cooking)
1 lb of lean ground beef
1/3 cup whole wheat panko bread crumbs
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon of dried dill
1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin
1 egg
Salt and Pepper
Flour for dusting
Olive oil for pan

1) Soak the bread crumbs in milk (normally I use whole wheat panko to make it South Beach Phase 2 friendly, but I was out at the time of this picture).

2) In a bowl add ground beef, dill, cumin, egg, salt and pepper with the bread crumb and milk mixture.

3) Mix well by hand and form into one large ball.

4) Divide the large meatball in half, those halves in halve and continue until you have 16 meatballs.

5) Roll each meatball between the palms of your hands then flatten. Dredge in flour.  Repeat with all 16 pieces.

6) Heat oil over medium heat, and place the meatballs in the frying pan cooking for 5 minutes or until brown.  Flip the meatballs over cover with a lid and cook five more minutes.  (Make sure the pan still has some oil, if it does not add a couple of tablespoons of water).  Serve with a mixed green salad and tzatziki.

I tried to make homemade pita bread to go with this meal but the pita didn't puff.  They still tasted good but I'm not going to post anything about the time I'll try the pita bread recipe from Smitten Kitchen.


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