Turkey was one of the most interesting places we visited in terms of history and beauty. We spent most of our time in Istanbul and would return anytime. The meatballs are wonderful and can be found every- where - sometimes served with a spicy sauce, fresh onions. What I like about them is they can be fried, boiled or grilled. The recipe below is one I found online because it represents what we ate.

  • 750 grams minced meat (lamb/mutton or beef, a mixture works well)
  • 2 small onions, finely chopped or grated
  • 2 slices of dry bread (without the crust)
  • 1 egg
  • Butter and olive oil to cover the bottom of the pan when cooking
  • 1 bunch of parsley
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 3 teaspoons sea salt
  • Fat for cooking (we recommend butter/ghee (not margarine), mixed with olive oil). Needless to say butter helps bring out the flavor. They don't need to be deep fat fried, but do make sure there is plenty in the pan to allow the meatballs to sizzle!
  • Soak the slices of bread in water, until they're properly sopping. Squeeze out excess water, and crumble the bread over the meat in a big bowl. (The bread can be omitted if you wish to avoid it).
  • Then add in all the other ingredients, and knead well.
  • Scoop up egg sized pieces of the mixture, and roll them in your hand to shape them into short stubby fingers. Fry on a medium heat until nicely brown.
  • Serve hot with fresh bread, raw onions, salad and chilies. Rice goes down well as an accompaniment and also consider using Chili sauce or tomato ketchup. Add a tablespoon of yogurt.