Spicy roasted jalapeno and salty feta put a flavorful spin on this grilled lamb kofta recipe! Roasting the jalapeno ahead of time adds so much depth of flavor to the grilled meat mixture, and feta is always a great addition! The feta doesn’t really melt when you heat it up, it helps the meat char on the grill and adds a fantastic texture to the kofta!
The inspiration for this recipe
I hosted a lamb grilling workshop this Saturday and it was a great time! We made a bunch of different recipes and talked about spice blends and different tzatziki sauces. We sampled Allagash Beers and enjoyed the Artbar Patio We made the Korean lamb burger I posted last week, and tasted the pasta salad too. In my opinion, these jalapeno kofta were the star of the show. I tried to focus on traditional dishes made in nontraditional ways, and talked a lot about giving your grilling game a much needed shot of energy at the halfway point of the season.
Making the jalapeno feta kofta mixture
For this kofta, you roast the jalapeno and peel it before mixing it into the meat. There is also feta, mint, onion, garlic, smoked paprika, and cumin. A great combo of flavors! Mix it in a bowl, then spread it into a log on some skewers.
There is no real binder in these so you need to refrigerate them a bit before popping them on the grill or they will be very fragile. You could also definitely put some breadcrumbs or bulgur wheat in here to help with the stability, but I wasn’t really feeling it for this recipe.
Grill the jalapeno feta lamb kofta
Get these onto a super hot grill and let them fully cook on the first side before flipping them. That way they won’t fall apart as easily.
The view from my grill!
Serving the jalapeno feta lamb kofta
These came out really delicious. They were so juicy, salty, and spicy, and had a great smokiness from the charred peppers and smoked paprika.
I used a standard tzatziki for this but at the event I encouraged people to get weird with yogurt sauces! As long as you have garlic, citrus, salt, and an herb, the world is yours. I like grated carrots, or even beets, and trying all sorts of different herbs. We actually had a make your own tzatziki station which I thought was a really cool idea for a party.
I also topped these jalapeno feta lamb kofta with fresh mint as a garnish to brighten up the dish.
And here I am at the grilling event, dropping some knowledge to the guests and burning the hair off the backs of my arms cause the insanely hot grill was right behind me.
Twists on this recipe
If you want even more heat, swap out the jalapenos for serrano peppers! You could also use a more grillable cheese like halloumi in the mix and i think it would be an awesome texture! You may need to break it up in a food processor though, it doesn’t crumble as easily.
If you are looking for a more traditional kofta recipe, check this one out.
Jalapeno Feta Lamb Kofta
- 5 jalapenos
- 4 ounces crumbled feta
- 1/4 cup diced red onion
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 30 mint leaves
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 pound ground lamb
- Broil or grill the jalapenos to char on all sides. Remove from heat and put them into a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to sit for 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, add the feta, onion, garlic, mint, cumin, and paprika to the bowl of a food processor.
- On a cutting board, peel the jalapenos and remove the seeds. The skin should come off easily after resting in the covered bowl. If you want to turn up the heat you can leave some of the seeds.
- Roughly chop the flesh of the peppers and add it to the food processor with the rest of the ingredients. Pulse about 15 times until everything is chopped up small.
- Put the lamb into a bowl and pour the jalapeno-feta mixture over the lamb. Stir well to combine and use your hands if needed to really get everything mixed together.
- Form the lamb into either burger sized patties, or long sausage shapes on skewers. Place them into the fridge for about an hour to firm up.
- Preheat a grill to high. Brush the kofta with some oil. Grill on high heat until cooked through. Depending on your shape and size this could be anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes per side
- Remove from heat, serve with tzatziki and garnish with fresh mint.