Keftedes with tomato, mint and parsley and crisp vine leaves


You'll need

180 ml extra-virgin olive oil 2 large onions, finely chopped 6 large vine-ripened tomatoes 70 gm (¼ cup) tomato paste 1 kg minced veal ¾ cup (firmly packed) each flat-leaf parsley and mint, finely chopped 50 gm (1/3 cup) plain flour, plus extra for dusting 3 tsp each ground cumin, ground cinnamon and ground nutmeg For shallow-frying: light olive oil 8 vine leaves preserved in brine

Method

  • 01
  • Heat 60ml extra-virgin olive oil in a large, deep-sided frying pan over medium heat, add onion and sauté until golden (12-15 minutes). Set aside to cool.
  • 02
  • Meanwhile, preheat oven to 170C. Blanch tomatoes until skins split (30 seconds), then refresh. Peel, halve over a bowl, discard seeds and reserve liquid. Combine 60ml liquid (reserve remainder) with tomato paste and 125ml water in a large bowl. Stir well to dissolve tomato paste, then add veal, herbs, flour, spices and cooked onion, season well, mix thoroughly and refrigerate to rest (1 hour).
  • 03
  • Meanwhile, place tomato halves cut-side down in a roasting pan lined with baking paper, drizzle with 60ml extra-virgin olive oil, season to taste and roast until starting to caramelise (30-40 minutes). Cool slightly, then pulse in a food processor with remaining tomato liquid until coarsely chopped. Season to taste and keep warm.
  • 04
  • Meanwhile, heat 1cm olive oil in a deep-sided frying pan until hot. Add vine leaves one at a time and fry, turning once, until crisp (1-2 minutes), then set aside to drain on absorbent paper.
  • 05
  • Shape veal mixture into walnut-sized keftedes and place on a tray (makes about 40 balls). Heat remaining extra-virgin olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Dust keftedes with flour and fry in batches, turning occasionally, until golden and cooked (6-8 minutes). Serve hot with roast tomato sauce and crisp vine leaves.
This recipe is from the March 2010 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.

“At a charity function I did with Jonathan, I asked him to come up with an idea for an appetiser and he suggested keftedes,” Kyritsis says. “They always remind me of hearty home cooking so when Jonathan came up with these light and fragrant little mouthfuls instead, I was delighted. He said he learned to make them this way from his aunty Diana. Well, she must have been a wonderful cook.”

At A Glance

  • Serves 8 people
GT
Signature Collection

Find out more about the Gourmet Traveller Signature Collection by Robert Gordon Australia, including where to buy it in store and online.

Read More
Recipe collections

Looking for fresh dinner ideas? Not sure how to make the most out of seasonal produce? Or do you need to plan the perfect party menu? Our recipe collections have you covered.

See more

At A Glance

  • Serves 8 people

Drink Suggestion

Fruity rosé.

You might also like...

Easter lunch recipes

recipes

Christmas pudding ice-cream

Cupcake recipes

recipes

Raspberry and Mint Mojito

Thomas Keller's sandwich recipes

recipes

Neil Perry: Prawn cocktail

Grilling recipes

recipes

Serge Dansereau: Blueberry vanilla tart

Neil Perry's Spice Temple recipes

recipes

Barbecue trout bundles with prosciutto and button mushrooms

Pickle and preserve recipes

recipes

Serge Dansereau: Homemade lemonade

Sexy salad recipes

recipes

Serge Danserau: Duck confit and potato terrine

Recipes from Australia's best chefs

recipes

conversion tool