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Middle Eastern Mezze - Kafta and Eggplant with Pomegranate and Yogurt

Kafta – Meat Kabob

This is a wonderful mezze and is a perfect accompaniment the hummus and babaghanoush to make it a full meal. These are easy to make and can be done in the oven or on the grill.

Ingredients

1.5 lb of ground Beef or ground Lamb or a mix of both. Don’t make the meat too lean or it will not hold together and will be dry.
1 large Onion grated, salted and drained in a strainer
2 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Allspice
2 Garlic cloves, crushed
One handful Parsley, chopped
Salt and Pepper

Put ground meat into a food processor and pulse until creamy, then add onion, parsley and spices. And pulse until completely mixed. Form into a sausage shaped patty.

Grill on a charcoal or gas grill until browned and seared outside but still pink inside, or under a broiler on a lined baking sheet until finished. Try to turn just once during cooking.

Remove from grill or broiler and cover with aluminum foil and let rest while you prepare the other mezze for the table.

Eggplant with Pomegranate and Yogurt

This is a fantastic dish to bring the flavors of the eggplant together with the sweetness of the pomegranate and creaminess of the yogurt

Ingredients

One Eggplant, sliced in ½ inch pieces
3 Tbsp Olive oil
2 Tbsp Pomegranate Molasses
1 Garlic clove, crushed
2 cups Yogurt, use a thick Greek style
Pine Nuts
Salt and Pepper

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Mix the pomegranate molasses and yogurt together and allow to come up to room temperature.

Slice the eggplant and add the garlic to 2 tbsp of the olive oil and lightly brush both sides of the eggplant. Season with salt and pepper and bake for 30-40 minutes, making sure to turn once during cooking. Remove the slices from the oven.

Take remainder of the garlic and olive oil and quickly sauté the pine nuts. Spread the eggplant with the yogurt and molasses mixture and pour the pine nuts over the top and serve.

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