Fresh Happy Tasty: Lamb and Quinoa Koftas, recipe by Jane Coxwell

Jane Coxwell has spent years working as a chef on yachts that have sailed the world. These days, she is the personal chef of Diane von Furstenberg, cooking for the fashion doyenne wherever she might be – at her home in New York City, in the country, or aboard the Eos yacht. This peripatetic life inspired the recipes in her new cookbook, Fresh Happy Tasty: An Adventure in 100 Recipe(on sale May 14, 2013). Watch this video and learn more about how Jane’s lifestyle and love of cooking with fresh ingredients helped her in creating her cookbook.

Want a bit more of Jane? Here’s another video of Jane cooking another scrumptious-looking meal (once you go through the link, click on the box on the bottom right of your screen).

Fresh Happy Tasty by Jane CoxwellLamb and Quinoa Koftas on Soft Chickpeas with Toasted Pita Bread
{Serves 2 to 3}
It’s amazing how much flavor you can shove into one little ball. Here’s another version of a on traditional kofta. Serve this with the Haydari (Turkish dipping sauce; page 278).

1⁄4 cup uncooked quinoa
1⁄2 pound best-quality ground lamb
2 tablespoons minced red onion
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1⁄4 teaspoon ground sumac
Pinch cayenne pepper
Leaves from 1⁄3 bunch fresh cilantro, minced
Zest of 1⁄2 lemon
Maldon or other flaky salt
Freshly ground black pepper

1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons olive oil
1⁄2 red onion, finely chopped
1 large garlic clove, minced
One 15-ounce can chickpeas
Maldon or other flaky salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1⁄2 lemon
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 large pieces pita bread, cut into 1 1⁄2-inch strips
1 handful fresh cilantro

1. Cook the quinoa according to the package directions and drain. Place back over the heat and stir for a minute to remove any excess moisture. Remove from the heat and cool.

Lamb and Quinoa Koftas by Jane Coxwell from Fresh Happy Tasty2. In a large bowl, combine the lamb, onion, garlic, cumin, coriander, sumac, cayenne, cilantro, and lemon zest; season with salt and pepper. Give it a good mix with your hands, add the quinoa, and mix again until the ingredients are evenly distributed. I taste mine here and encourage you to do the same.

3. Cover the lamb mixture in plastic wrap and refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes, or up to 6 hours, to firm up a little.

4. Meanwhile, prepare the chickpeas. Add the cumin to a dry sauté pan and toast it for a couple of minutes over low heat, stirring often, until fragrant. Add the olive oil to the pan, then the onion and garlic, and sweat them down for about 5 minutes, still over low heat (you’re not looking for them to brown). Add the chickpeas along with the liquid in the can. Season with a little salt and pepper and simmer for about 10 minutes. You want the chickpeas to be fork tender but not so soft that they don’t hold together. Give the pan a shake every now and then.

5. Remove the pan from the heat and let the chickpeas cool a bit. Add a squeeze of lemon juice and check the seasoning. (You’ll be reheating the chickpeas quickly when the koftas are cooked.)

6. Remove the lamb mixture from the fridge and form it into football shapes. I start by rolling meatballs the size of a golf ball and then I squash them a little to elongate them. Or you can make the meatballs in any shape you like.

7. When you’re ready to eat, heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat and add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil. Get the pan pretty hot, but not smoking hot. You want to get nice color on the lamb, but not so much heat that the outsides burn before the insides cook. Place the meatballs one by one in the pan and cook them for about 4 minutes each, until browned on the outside and cooked through in the middle. (If you want to prepare them in advance, cook them for a couple of minutes in a very hot pan to give them some color and then transfer them to a baking dish. When you’re ready to serve, finish them off in a 400°F oven for a few minutes.)

8. While the meatballs are cooking, gently warm the chickpeas over low heat.

9. Place the warmed chickpeas on a serving platter and top with the meatballs. Keep the heat going on the sauté pan that held the meatballs and use that oil to fry the pita bread strips, about 1 minute on each side. Place the pita strips on the side of the platter, top the whole thing with cilantro leaves, and serve.

Want more recipes that are Fresh Happy Tasty? Buy your own copy from your favorite online retailer. Get daily updates on what Jane’s cooking and tasting—like her on Facebook or follow her on Twitter.Lamb and Quinoa Koftast from Fresh Happy Tasty by Jane Coxwell

15 Responses to “Fresh Happy Tasty: Lamb and Quinoa Koftas, recipe by Jane Coxwell”
  1. I’m not easily impressed. . . but that’s impressing me! 🙂

  2. That’s way more clever than I was expecting. Thanks!

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  4. apostar says:

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  9. Alper says:

    This is WONDERFUL! Just made it for lunch. I made a half-recipe. Then served mlyesf 1 cup for now, and saving the other cup for lunch tomorrow! It’s like all my favorite things in one bowl. Your recipes never strike out Beth! Someone ask me last night on Facebook if all I eat is your recipes…. seems like it! 🙂

    • Ivana says:

      here r a couple of the eseisat but best recipes my family just LOVES.pre-heat over to 350put chicken in baking pan and smother with italian dressing for extra flavor sprinkle parmesan cheese on top. YUMMY cover tightly with foil,throw it in oven for about 2 1/2 hours and u have your self a delicious meal the chicken just falls apart when u touch it with a fork. enjoynow if u want the same delicious meal that falls apart when u touch it with the fork do all the same steps above but instead of smothering in italian smother with a bottle of bar b que sauce. cover and cook 2 1/2 hours and tah dah dinner is served and your family will be happySource(s):my source is i have the worlds pickiest eaters and they love both of these and every time company comes over they ask me for my recipes to these chicken meals

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  11. Timo says:

    I will be looking fawrord to your review of Wally Lamb’s new book. I wouldn’t mind getting my hands on that one, but it’ll probably be awhile yet. I have had those moments where, sometimes even before I begin a book, I know that it’s one of the ones that will make my best list. I am glad this one is that way for you! I hope you have a great week!

  12. Babu says:

    for her salads they’re the prfeect size for her appetite. This is one of her favorite Quinoa Salad, which I paired with some fruits and veggies. When she brings things like chili, her box contains

  13. Synthia Ball says:

    Lve all these yummy recipes!!

    • Branda says:

      i just started eantig quinoa. finding out how good it is for you did you know it has all 7 amino acids in it? i did not and that is one of the many reasons i started to eat it. so, i’m looking for ways to cook with it. it does need dressing up lol (thanks for adding me as a link, i did the same for you) what cooking contests are you going after this summer? i need to get back into that .again. have a good wknd.

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