Spinach Kofta in a Yoghurt Curry

2015-04-06
  • Yield : 20 balls
  • Prep Time : 20m
  • Cook Time : 20m
  • Ready In : 45m

The recipe

Kofta are vegetable balls usually bound together with a flour made from lentils, known as gram or besan flour, and so this dish is gluten free. They are similar to onion bhaji and easy to make.  Kofta are quite dry and so we have added a yoghurt curry, thickened with gram flour and flavoured with cumin, onion and mustard seeds.

Ingredients

  • For the Koftas
  • 450g fresh spinach leaves, thick stems removed
  • 170g gram flour
  • 120g red onion, finely chopped
  • 120g ripe tomato, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed and finely chopped
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tbsp coriander leaves, roughly chopped
  • 60ml water
  • salt to taste
  • oil for deep frying
  • For the Yoghurt Curry
  • 375ml thick natural yoghurt
  • 4 tbsp gram flour
  • 700ml water
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 2 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 120g red onion, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed and finely chopped
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • ½ tsp chilli powder (or to taste)
  • salt, to taste

Method

Step 1

Blanch the spinach in boiling water for 1 minute and then place into a colander and refresh the leaves with cold water. Drain and squeeze out the excess liquid. Finely chop the drained spinach and then combine with the other Kofta ingredients. Add up to 60ml water to the mix so that it is soft but not sloppy. Season with salt, to taste. Dampen your hands with water and, using 1 tablespoon for each, shape the mixture into balls and set aside while you make the yoghurt curry.

Step 2

Put the yoghurt into a large bowl and whisk in the gram flour and water, making sure there are no lumps.

Step 3

Heat the oil over a low heat in a saucepan or frying pan. Add the mustard and fenugreek seeds, cover and cook for about 30 seconds, while the seeds pop. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes, until they are soft and starting to brown. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute, stirring until it is soft. Add the turmeric and chilli powder and stir for 30 seconds. Add the yoghurt mixture and bring to a gentle boil. Turn the heat down and simmer for 10 minutes. Season with salt, to taste.

Step 4

While the yoghurt mixture is cooking, heat a karahi or deep-sided pan 1/3 full with oil for deep frying. Heat the oil to 180°C or test with a small piece of bread, which will brown in 15 seconds. Cook the koftas in the oil in batches, turning them regularly, until golden brown and cooked through. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on kitchen paper to drain the excess oil. Serve with the Yoghurt Curry.

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