Grilled Lamb Kebabs, using ground lamb, with a tangy Herb Salad and Dilled Yogurt Sauce- a delicious, paleo friendly recipe featuring Middle Eastern flavors.
Calling all lamb lovers out there…..stop everything and make this right now! Middle Eastern- Inspired Lamb Kebabs with a tangy Herb Salad and a dilled yogurt sauce….oh my goodness, so delicious! Inspired by a dinner we had at Botanica Restaurant in Los Angeles, I had to come home and try to replicate it right away of course!
Infused with Middle Eastern spices, these ground lamb kebabs are bursting with flavor! What I love about this meal is the balance –the tangy herb salad is so light and refreshing alongside the lamb- cutting down the richness of the meat. A great pairing.
It starts with fresh ground lamb. I prefer to use sustainably raised, locally grown, American lamb, which is raised closer to home compared to imported lamb that travels from great distances to get here. For one, it’s fresher but more importantly, it supports our local community. It’s produced in nearly every state and is available fresh year round, just check your local farmers market. In years past we’ve bought ½ or ¼ of a lamb locally and kept it frozen, which is always an option too.
Did you know…American lamb is always raised hormone-free? Producers give their animals healthy, comfortable lives, letting them graze and forage on a variety of nutrient-dense grasses and legumes – producing succulent, sweet and tender meat.
Form the lamb into Turkish cucumber shaped tubes.
Fresh mint and Middle Eastern spices like cumin, coriander and sumac- give these ground lamb kebabs an extra punch of flavor. We’ve talked about sumac here on the blog quite a bit and if you haven’t tried it yet, now is the time. It has this delicious tanginess that really pairs well with lamb.
Make sure to soak your skewers a couple hours in advance, and double them up so the lamb stays on better.
Brush the lamb kebabs with olive oil before grilling so they don’t stick.
They cook surprisingly quickly, just a few minutes on each side, maybe 8-10 minutes total.
The tangy herb salad, contains baby spring greens, parsley, dill and mint and a handful of sprouts. Pea shoots are nice too. Slice up some radish and cucumber for a little crunch.
The dilly yogurt sauce goes on the bottom of the plate, under the kebabs.
Layer the kebabs, then pile on the delicious herb salad.
Give this Lamb kebabs a whirl- I know you will love them! If preparing for a larger gathering, feel free to form the kebabs a day ahead, and refrigerate. The meat will take on more flavor from the spices and you won’t have to fiddle with the forming the skewers at the last minute.
For other delicious lamb recipes try these!
Grilled Lamb Lollipops with Salsa Verde
Grilled Lamb Kebabs with herb Salad and Yogurt Sauce
Grilled Lamb Kebabs with a tangy Herb Salad and Dilled Yogurt Sauce- a delicious, healthy, paleo friendly recipe featuring ground lamb spiced with Middle Eastern seasonings.
- Prep Time: 20
- Cook Time: 20
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: 3
- Category: main
- Method: grilled
- Cuisine: middle eastern
- 1 lb ground lamb ( makes 6 skewers)
- 1/2 an onion, finely diced
- 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 2 teaspoons coriander
- 2 teaspoons sumac ( if you can’t find sumac, sub 1 tablespoon finely chopped lemon zest)
- 1 teaspoon Aleppo Chili flakes ( or regular chili flakes)
- 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons chopped mint (or parsley, or dill)
- 12 x 12 inch wood skewers, soaked in water for 1 hour, or overnight
- 1 cup plain thick greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons fresh chopped dill ( or mint)
- 2 garlic cloves finely minced
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2-3 handfuls babyspring greens
- 1 cup fresh torn herbs- any mix of Italian parsley, mint, dill, cilantro
- 1/2 -1 cup sprouts – radish, sunflower, or baby pea shoots ( optional)
- 1 turkish cucumber, thinly sliced
- 2 radishes thinly sliced- watermelon radishes are pretty
- 1 green onion thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- zest of one lemon
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cracked pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon sumac
Soak the skewers and start the grill.
With a wet hand, mix the lamb ingredients in a medium bowl and set aside while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
Mix the yogurt sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
Prep the salad ingredients and place them into a medium bowl. Stir the salad dressing ingredients into a small bowl.
Form the kebabs. Using wet hands, divide meat into 6 portions, of similar size, roughly ½ cup. Form each into long oval shape, then skewer with two skewers, and then continue shaping and stretching until meat is roughly 5 inches long, and 1 ½ inches in diameter, like the shape of a Turkish cucumber. You can gently roll the meat on the skewers like you would a rolling pin, to get it nice and even, but they don’t need to be prefect. Just make sure the skewers are centered down the middle so the lamb stays on. ( All of this could be made ahead and refrigerated overnight or until ready to grill. )
Brush, spray or roll in olive oil to prevent sticking, and grill over med-high heat, turning every few minutes after getting a good sear on all sides. To turn, use tongs on the lamb itself, rather than being temped to pick up by the skewers- it will help the lamb stay on. Once the lamb is seared on all sides, turn the grill off, cover it, letting the lamb rest inside for a few minutes while you get the plates ready.
Toss the salad, and place a smear of yogurt dill sauce on one half of the plate. Top the sauce with 2-3 skewers. Mound the salad on the other half and serve immediately.
If preparing for a larger gathering, feel free to form the kebabs a day ahead, and refrigerate. The meat will take on more flavor from the spices and you won’t have to fiddle with the forming the skewers at the last minute.