Recipe: spicy lamb kofta from Arabica

Thursday, November 21, 2019 - 10:58

Founded by James Walters, Arabica are a regular fixture at our weekly food market. Walters tells us how to make one of the most popular meat dishes on the menu at their restaurant in Borough Market.

He recommends asking your local butcher for a piece of British grass-fed lamb shoulder. He tells us that your butcher should be able to de-bone and ground the piece of lamb using a 6mm cutting plate which gives a coarsely textured, rich and full-flavoured mince that will prevent the koftas from drying out while cooking.

For a quick supper, serve with a dollop of hummus from the Southbank Centre stall and fattoush salad or stuff into a warm pita bread. Bursting with flavour, this is a tangy dish you’ll be obsessing over.

 spicy lamb kofta

Arabica: spicy lamb kofta
  • 1kg minced lamb shoulder
  • ½ red pepper, finely diced
  • ½ green pepper, finely diced
  • ½ small bunch flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tsp Urfa chilli flakes
  • ½ tsp wild sumac
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • 1tsp cinnamon
  • 1½ tsp sea salt
  • a splash of grapeseed oil, for preparing the mixture and cooking
  • 8 flat wooden bamboo skewers, pre-soaked in water



  1. Put all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl and ideally use your hands to mix and meld all the ingredients together.
  2. Divide the mixture roughly into 24 small balls with lightly oiled hands, or alternatively if you don’t have any skewers to hand, make 8 larger oval-shaped patties using cupped palms.
  3. Chill the mixture for an hour to firm it up and hold it together, then thread three small balls onto each skewer.
  4. Pan fry with a little grapeseed oil in a hot cast-iron skillet, flipping the kofta patties every 30 seconds or so until they develop a nice crust and a juicy, medium-rare interior. If you have a thermometer, remove them from the heat when the internal temperature reaches 54°C and rest them for five minutes.




Every weekend, from Friday to Sunday, you’ll find fantastic street food creations from around the world at Southbank Centre Food Market.

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