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Koofteh Rizeh – Lamb Meatballs with Mint in Tomato Sauce کوفته ریزه

Koofteh Rizeh – Lamb Meatballs with Mint in Tomato Sauce کوفته ریزه

Koofteh Rizeh – Lamb meatballs with mint in Tomato Sauce کوفته ریزه is also called Gheymeh Rizeh (قیمه ریزه), Kale Ghondjishki (کله گنجشکی) or Ghermez Rizeh (قرمز ریزه ). It is a traditional and popular dish from the marvelous city of Isfahan. These simple meatballs are prepared without any use of breadcrumbs, bread, or egg, and instead, chickpea flour is used. The meatballs are mixed with minced lamb, onions, turmeric, dried, and finely grated mint. Then the meatballs simmer in a spicy sauce made with tomato paste, onions, turmeric, and dried mint. Persian Sangak or Taftoon bread is commonly served with meatballs to soak up the tomato sauce. Serve with a bit of torshi (pickled vegetables) and everybody is satisfied. A filling dish that can be prepared quickly.

Koofteh Rizeh – Lamb Meatballs with Mint in Tomato Sauce کوفته ریزه

TYPICAL DISHES OF ISFAHAN

For this recipe it is truly necessary to use the dried mint, as it is so much more aromatic than the fresh one. Besides, the dried mint is a wonderful companion to the lamb. Sometimes diced potatoes are also added to the tomato and mint sauce.

Typical dishes of Isfahan are Eshkeneh – Onion Soup with Egg Drop, Ashe- Shole Ghalamkar – Beggar’s Soup with Legumes and Fresh HerbsHalim Bademjan – Eggplant Dip, Beryani, Kabab Zarak – Lamb Meatballs in grape syrup, Tas Kabab-e Beh – Roast Beef on Root Vegetables and Quince oder Kabab Hoseini  – VegetableLamb Kebabs. For dessert we have Khoresht-e Mast – Sweet Saffron Yoghurt,  Fereni – Rice Cream with Raspberry Puree and Pashmak or Ghosh-e Fil Crispy Elephant Ears with Dugh – Our National Drink with Homemade Yogurt.

SIO-SE-POL BRIDGE ISFAHAN

Of course, Naqsh-e Jahan with its fairytale palaces, mosques with blue domes, and crowded bazaar is just marvelous. But for me, the Sio-se-pol Bridge, with its 33 arches is the most magical place in Isfahan. It is one of the most beautiful bridges ( viaducts) in the city and you have some luck nowadays when the river carries some water at all. The Bridge dates back to 1602 and was commissioned by Shah Abbas I. It is built of burnt clay, is about 300 meters long and almost 14 meters wide, and has two levels. It is a tradition to walk barefoot over the stones in front of the bridge in the water. Depending on the water level only the feet could get wet or even more.

Koofteh Rizeh – Lamb Meatballs with Mint in Tomato Sauce کوفته ریزه

PICNIC AT ZAYANDE RUD IN ISFAHAN

Back then, some of my aunts and uncles lived in Isfahan with their children. And when we visited them, sometimes my aunt prepared a huge pot of Koofteh Rizeh and we made our way to the bridge for a picnic. Indeed, in Chahar Bagh Park on the banks of the Zayandeh Rud River, we loved to picnic. We spread a picnic blanket under the willow tree and placed the still warm pot full of Koofteh Rizeh and fresh bread in the center. Everyone then dipped their bread into that pot while grabbing a meatball, and we also ate sabzi khordan and torshi on top of it. From this place, we had a magnificent view of the mountain peaks of the Zagros Mountains and admired the reflections of the bridge in the water during the day.

TEST OF COURAGE ON THE RIVER IN ISFAHAN

For us children, a great test of courage was awaiting us one day, for under the bridge between the 33 arches some stone cubes were surrounded by the flowing river. We were supposed to jump from stone cube to stone cube between the arches. To get from the first arch to the last one, we had a lot to jump over, I guess there were 2 or 3 of them at a time. Fortunately, we were able to recover from the excitement a bit in the arches until it was time to go on again. As a reward, we then strolled around on the beautiful bridge, with a cone of ice cream in hand.

We also enjoyed a hot tea in one of the tea houses built on the blocks in front of the bridge. Then we sat down on one of the arches, sang, laughed, and awaited the sunset. The bridge has a very special atmosphere in the evening, as it is illuminated and reflects breathtaking in the river. There is something very calming about sitting here and looking out at the flowing water. Let the peaceful and pleasant atmosphere enchant you. A beautiful bridge on which you will love to spend some time.

Koofteh Rizeh – Lamb Meatballs with Mint in Tomato Sauce کوفته ریزه

INGREDIENTS MEATBALLS

500 g ground lamb

1 onion

1 tbsp turmeric*

100 g chickpea flour*

1 tbsp dried mint*

INGREDIENTS TOMATO-MINT SAUCE

1 onion

1 tbsp turmeric*

3 tbsp tomato paste*

750 ml water

1 tbsp dried mint*

salt, pepper

PREPARATION MEAT BALLS

Chop the onion in a food processor, add to the minced meat, mix with turmeric, chickpea flour, dried mint, salt and pepper. Now it comes to forming the meatballs, moisten your hands with cold water. So nothing sticks to your hands and the meatballs will be nice and smooth. Cover and place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

PREPARATION TOMATO-MINT SAUCE

Slice onion into fine rings and fry in a little oil, once golden, add turmeric. Dissolve tomato paste in water with dried mint, salt and pepper. Pour the tomato-mint sauce in a large pan and add the meatballs, boil once and then cover with a lid, simmer for 20 minutes at medium temperature. Remove lid and continue to simmer for another 15 minutes until the sauce thickens up nicely.

Serve with Sangak Bread and Torshi.

BEFARMAYID!

Susan

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Koofteh Rizeh – Lamb Meatballs with Mint in Tomato Sauce کوفته ریزه

Koofteh Rizeh – Lamb Meatballs with Mint in Tomato Sauce کوفته ریزه

These simple meatballs are prepared without any use of breadcrumbs, bread, or egg, and instead, chickpea flour is used.

Course after work cooking, easy recipe, fast cooking, Main Dish, meat balls
Cuisine iran, iranian food, Isfahan, Isfahan cuisine, Persian, persian cuisine, Persian Food
Keyword Koofteh Rizeh – Lamb Meatballs with Mint in Tomato Sauce کوفته ریزه
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Servings 4 people
Author Labsalliebe

Ingredients

INGREDIENTS MEATBALLS

  • 500 g ground lamb
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tbsp turmeric
  • 100 g chickpea flour
  • 1 tbsp dried mint

INGREDIENTS TOMATO-MINT SAUCE

  • 1 onion
  • 1 tbsp turmeric
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste
  • 750 ml water
  • 1 tbsp dried mint
  • salt, pepper

Instructions

PREPARATION MEAT BALLS

  1. Chop the onion in a food processor,

  2. add to the minced meat,

  3. mix with turmeric, chickpea flour, dried mint, salt and pepper.

  4. Now it comes to forming the meatballs, moisten your hands with cold water. So nothing sticks to your hands and the meatballs will be nice and smooth.

  5. Cover and place the meat balls in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

PREPARATION TOMATO-MINT SAUCE

  1. Slice onion into fine rings and fry in a little oil, once golden, add turmeric.

  2. Dissolve tomato paste in water with dried mint, salt and pepper.

  3. Pour the tomato-mint sauce in a large pan and add the meatballs, boil once and then cover with a lid, simmer for 20 minutes at medium temperature.

  4. Remove lid and continue to simmer for another 15 minutes until the sauce thickens up nicely.

Recipe Notes

Serve with Sangak or Taftoon Bread and Torshi.

Save the recipe for later on Pinterest!

Koofteh Rizeh – Lamb Meatballs with Mint in Tomato Sauce کوفته ریزه

 

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