Spiced Ground Sirloin Kebabs with Turmeric-Cucumber Greek Yogurt Sauce
These delectable ground sirloin kebabs are heated with spicy chilies in the Harissa, a garlicky North African chile paste. Harissa lends depth to cooked meats, vegetables, or starchy side dishes and livens up foods. Dining on these juicy, tender and intricately spiced kebabs, wrapped in warmed, supple Naan and topped with tangy, cooling Turmeric-Cucumber Greek Yogurt Sauce will make your tummy sway in extreme delight. Dancing flavors of caraway, dried mint, and other toasted, fragrant spices swirl around your palate.
Heat a small, ungreased frying pan on medium heat. Add the whole coriander and cumin seeds. Toast the spices, stirring with a wooden spoon 10-20 seconds or until slightly darker and fragrant.
Remove from pan. Once cool, blend in a clean coffee or spice grinder or pulverize in a mortar and pestle. Mix all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.
Cover with plastic film and refrigerate for 1 to 24 hours for flavors to blend. To make kebabs, divide meat into 12 portions. Shape them into cylinders or flattened, ovular patties. Skewer the meat, pressing it to mold it to the skewer. Refrigerate the skewers on a baking sheet, covered with plastic film, while preheating your grill.
Grilling & Serving
Preheat a grill on medium high heat. Clean and oil your grill plate. Place kebabs on the grill. Cook approximately 3-5 minutes per side, using a large, metal spatula to turn them. Watch the kebabs carefully, so you don’t overcook and dry them out. Warm the Naan on the grill for 30 seconds to 1 minute per side. Place a skewered kebab into each Naan and remove skewer. Top with Turmeric-Cucumber Greek Yogurt Sauce. Garnish with chopped mint, cilantro or both. Pass the Harissa to the bolder, heat-seeking guests.
Stove Top Cooking
Heat a grill pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray or olive oil. Add non-skewered patties to pan. Cook 3-5 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness.
*Harissa can be purchased in specialty gourmet shops, Middle Eastern grocery markets, or online. Search for excellent recipes on the web and prepare it yourself. It’s easy to make, and bright with fresh flavor.
Why toast whole spices?
Toasting spices with dry heat transforms the flavors, mellowing bitterness and adding complexities. As whole spices heat, they release volatile aromatics, that will perfume your kitchen and intensify their flavor compounds. Dry-roasting removes excess moisture and makes the seeds crisper. Cumin develops deeper almost woodsy characteristics, while coriander’s floral, citrus notes turn intensely earthy and grassy. Spices become easier to grind once toasted as well.