Taste of Cyprus Local Food Keftedes (greek meat balls)

Keftedes (greek meat balls)

Keftedes are Cypriot meatballs, traditionally made with ground pork, grated potato, onion, parsley, mint, cinnamon, egg and breadcrumbs, for a very tasty, deep-fried finger food, or as part of a meal. They can also be made with beef. Keftedes are often served with bulgar pilaf and plain yoghurt.

Ingredients
1 red onion, grated
500g / 1 lb beef mince (ground beef) (or lamb!)
200g / 6.5oz pork mince (ground pork), or more beef
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup / 60g panko breadcrumbs (or use normal)
1 egg
1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
6 large mint leaves, finely chopped (spearmint if you can, it’s authentic)
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3/4 tsp salt
Black pepper
Cooking / Serving:
1/2 cup flour any white
3 tbsp olive oil
Finely chopped parsley optional, for garnish
Tzatziki (Note 5) or Greek yoghurt

Instructions
Grate the onion straight into a large bowl, then add remaining Meatball ingredients. Use your hands to mix well for a few minutes until the mixture is quite smooth and very well combined.

Optional: Refrigerate for 1 hour – makes them easier to roll + retains round shape when cooking.
Measure out heaped tablespoons and dollop onto a work surface – should make around 32 – 35. Then roll into balls.
Heat most of the oil in a large skillet over medium high heat (medium if you have a strong gas stove). Use enough oil to cover the surface of the skillet.
Cook in 2 to 3 batches: Dredge meatballs lightly in flour, shaking off excess, then place in the skillet. Roll them around and cook for 5 – 6 minutes, until nicely browned all over. Remove onto plate, cover to keep warm and repeat with remaining meatballs.
BAKING: Alternatively, spray generously with oil (preferably olive oil) then bake at 180C/350F for 20 minutes or until browned. The pan frying method is the traditional way and the meatballs are slightly juicier.

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