Oh yes, we went there. And this was actually the easiest of all the fakeaway dishes to make. It was so scarily like the shaven-elephant-leg-at-2am staple that we felt a bit weird testing it on Friday lunchtime, without several pints beforehand.
But once you’re over the context shift, it’s actually a not-so-guilty pleasure – spiced, garlicky lamb mince, slow cooked and then seared and served with salad and homemade flatbreads. Yep, we said it: the kebab is basically a health food.
This spicing will make it taste just like the stuff from a takeaway; feel free to fancy it up with fresh herbs, fennel seeds, paprika or whatever else takes your fancy.
1kg lamb mince
1 ½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp onion powder
Plenty of black pepper
Cabbage and onion salad
1 small red cabbage, finely shredded
1 red onion, finely shredded
1 fennel bulb, finely shredded
2 carrots, grated
1 lemon, juice of
½ tsp fine sea salt
Black pepper, to taste
Flat breads, pickles, chillies, lemon wedges and yoghurt to serve
For the kebab meat:
Heat the oven to 130°C. Combine all ingredients in a food mixer and pulse a few times until thoroughly combined – don’t just leave the machine running or the mix will be far too sticky. Alternatively you can work the mix in a large bowl with your hands, squashing everything together to make a uniform texture. Shape the mix into a fat, little kebab shape (just like the ones you see on spits in a kebab shop, not that we’d know, of course), pressing quite firmly to keep it compact. Roll this in a large piece of cling film to further compact and shape the mix, before removing the clingfilm and wrapping tightly in tin foil. Place on a roasting tray and roast for 2 ½ hours, rotating a quarter turn every 45 minutes or so. Allow to rest for 20 minutes before carving.
Simply mix everything well in a bowl, and leave to stand for an hour. Taste before serving and adjust the seasoning as necessary.
To assemble, first carve the kebab meat by using a sharp knife to shave long strips off. At this point you can drop it into a hot frying pan with a little oil to brown it a little, but you don’t have to. Stuff pitta breads with kebab meat, salad and whatever pickles, chillies and sauces take your fancy, and dig in.