Recipe: Kefta with Yoghurt Sauce

The other night we had the great pleasure of cooking for Daniel Meyer and his fiancee Ilona. As you may remember, we met Daniel at the Flying Pigs Union Square Greenmarket stand where he works every Friday. We were very excited to have the two of them over, but also a little nervous. Pork, our entertaining go-to, was out of the question. And besides selling the meat one day a week, Daniel develops recipes for one of our absolute favorite food writers... so the pressure was on.

We've been trying to bring a little spring-ish-ness into our meals, so we thought lamb would be a great protein to center the meal around. Also, Jake has been pushing to include some more ground meat recipes on the blog because it's so economical. So there we landed - on ground lamb. And why not make Kefta? Simple, economical, spring-like, full of ingredients that are readily available at the market, and damn good. Settled!

To add some lightness and brightness to the meal, we made a simple sheep’s milk yoghurt sauce. We also served a warming onion and freekeh dish, cooked with spiced chicken stock and a simple spicy radish micro green salad from Two Guys. Most exciting though were the puffy pitas Silka made - stay tuned for the recipe, it's a winner! 


+ 3 lbs of ground lamb
+ 1 egg
+ 2 loose cups of parsley
+ 2-3 large shallots, cut into quarters
+ 12 cloves of garlic, crushed and peeled
+ 2 tbsp salt
+ 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
+ ½ tsp ground cumin
+ ½ tsp ground coriander
+ ½ tsp ground ginger
+ ½ tsp ground cinnamon

1. Put everything - except the lamb and egg - into a Cuisinart fitted with the blade attachment and pulse until it looks like a fine pesto.
2. In a large bowl combine the lamb, egg, and "pesto" until evenly blended, trying not to overwork the meat.
3. Form large balls with the mixture, about 1 ½ in diameter (between the size of a golf ball and a tennis ball) and place them on a wire rack on top of a baking sheet.
4. Place the meatballs in the center rack of the oven and turn on the broiler. Cook for 7 minutes and then turn the meatballs over. Cook for another 7 minutes. If you don't have a broiler, you can bake them at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes.

Yoghurt Sauce

+ 8 oz sheep's milk yoghurt
+ 1 tsp ground cumin
+ ½ cup of diced parsley
+ a pinch of salt

Combine ingredients and serve with Kefta.

Serves 4 with leftovers


  1. Gonna make these for Oscar night!

  2. Shoo,
    How did they turn out on the big night. We love to hear peoples experience of our recipes!

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