Koofteh (Persian Herb Meatballs)
Koofteh, in my opinion, is of the healthiest protein-packed Persian dishes that is both satisfying and good for you. It can be enjoyed with a side of fresh herbs, bread, and plain yogurt.
2 lbs Ground Beef (I always use Organic) گوشت چرخ کرده
1/4 cup Chickpea Flour آرد نخودچی
1/4 cup Barberries زرشک
2 Eggs تخم مرغ
1 cup Dried Koofteh Herbs سبزی خشک کوفته
1/2 cup Rice برنج
1/2 cup Split yellow peas لپه
Persian Golden Prunes آلو
Salt and Pepper to taste نمک و فلفل
1 Tbsp Cinnamon دار چین
1 Tbsp Turmeric زرد چوبه
1/2 cup Fried Onions پیاز داغ
1 sheet of Prune Fruit Leather (Lavashak) لواشک آلو – this is optional but it’s what makes my sauce so delicious!
2 Tbsp Tomato Paste رب گوجه
Soak and rinse the rice and split yellow peas, then cook them in a pot together with some salt and turmeric. Once they are fully cook, drain the excess water and allow to fully cool. You are going to add this to the meat mixture and need it to be fully cooled down.
Meanwhile, remove any stems or rocks from the barberries and wash and rinse them thoroughly and drain them from any excess water.
Wash and rinse your golden prunes. These often have dirt and particles in them so washing them will be important. I soak mine for about 5 mins.
FOR THE SAUCE:
In a big pot, add 3 cups of water, the tomato paste, the rinsed prunes, the lavashak (fruit leather), fried onions and bring to a boil. Season with a generous amount of salt.
In a mixing bowl, mix the meat, chickpea flour, raw eggs, herbs, barberries, and the cooked rice and split peas mixture. Season with some salt, pepper and cinnamon and roll them into palm-sized meatballs.
Allow them to fully cook and simmer in the sauce for about an hour or until the meat is fully cooked and enjoy!