while persian cuisine is so diverse, and full of many, many amazing dishes, chelo kabob remains the favorite of many. with so many different kinds of kabob–koobideh (ground beef), barg (filet or tenderloin), and joojeh (chicken) to name a couple–it’s hard to choose a favorite! however, when you don’t have access to a grill, like me, your choice of kabob becomes simple: kabob digi (pan kabob).
while i don’t discriminate when it comes to kabob, kabob digi has always been a favorite of mine. because cooking persian food can be so time consuming, we didn’t always eat it for weekday dinners when i was growing up. so, whenever my mom would come home from work and say we were having kabob digi, it felt like a treat!
now that i live in my own apartment, sans grill, i look to kabob digi as a good recipe for the weekend when i’m craving some chelo kabob. it’s pretty easy to make, and only takes about 30 minutes! the good thing is, if you’re cooking for one person, there is allllllways leftovers!
recipe (serves 4):
- 1 lb ground beef (you can use lamb, or a combo if you want!)
- 1 medium yellow onion
- ½ tablespoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 1 large tomato (i use beefsteak tomatoes)
- 2-4 tablespoons vegetable/canola oil
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- grate or process onion, and drain any liquid. you can use a cheesecloth, squeezing out all the extra liquid from the onion. place onion in a mixing bowl
- add ground meat to the bowl with the onion
- add salt, pepper, and turmeric
- mix onion, meat, and spices by hand until completely combined. consistency should almost be like a paste
- roll into balls and flatten to make an oval shape. the size is completely up to you–i usually make smaller ones–but the patties should not be too thick!
- cut the tomato into thick slices, then cut each slice in half
- place tomato slices over olive oil in a pan and sauté carefully over a medium heat. these do not need to cook long (5-7 minutes), and remove from heat well before the tomatoes become mushy
- heat vegetable/canola oil in a large frying pan on a medium-high heat
- add the patties to the oil and allow the first side to be seared
- flip the patties and continue to cook on medium heat for another 10 minutes, or until they are cooked through
- turn off heat, and allow kabobs to sit for a couple minutes before plating
- serve tomatoes and kabobs with basmati rice, and enjoy!