Kofta (Kafta) Pita Sandwich Recipe

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Kofta is a recipe taught to me by Ahmad, a young man who lived with our family for two years. Kafta and Ahmad's Tabouli have become Middle Eastern standards in our family menus since then. I am sure ground lamb is the meat of choice for this creation, but we use a mixture of extra lean beef (85%) and ground turkey. I often season the meat mixture with ground cumin, red pepper flakes, or any other complimentary seasonings. You can use plain white pita bread or whole wheat. The diameter of pita breads will determine the yield, but generally one recipe (2 pounds of meat) makes twelve 6-inch Kaftas, or eight 8-inch. These freeze well and are great for a quick microwaved snack or lunch. Serve with salsa or ketchup, or a yogurt/cucumber dressing. See photos for pictorial of how to fill and bake. For a sausage and zucchini variation, click below left under Useful Links.

Prep time:
Cook time:
Servings: 12 Servings
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Ingredients

Cost per serving $0.40 view details
  • 2 cups curley parsley minced (about 1-2 bunches)
  • 1 medium tomato, chopped fine
  • 1 medium onion, chopped fine
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound 85% lean ground beef
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper, or to taste
  • 10 -12 pita breads, 6-8 inch diameter
  • Salsa, ketchup, yogurt dressing (optional)

Directions

  1. In a large bowl mix together parsley, tomatoes, onions, garlic, ground beef, turkey, salt and pepper thoroughly.
  2. Microwave pita bread for 10 seconds or until soft enough to open. Snip an edge of bread with kitchen shears to open, and pull top and bottom halves apart leaving one small edge together. If the top and bottom stick together any place, just work around it as a tear here and there is OK.
  3. Fill bottom half of pita with 1/2 to 3/4 cup meat mixture, or sufficient amount to make a layer 1/4 inch thick. Cover with top and press down lightly to squeeze filling and make thickness uniform.
  4. Place on lightly greased baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F. for 35 minutes, flipping sandwiches over at intervals twice during baking.

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Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving %DV
Serving Size 96g
Recipe makes 12 servings
Calories 149  
Calories from Fat 80 54%
Total Fat 8.85g 11%
Saturated Fat 3.08g 12%
Trans Fat 0.46g  
Cholesterol 56mg 19%
Sodium 174mg 7%
Potassium 240mg 7%
Total Carbs 2.48g 1%
Dietary Fiber 0.3g 1%
Sugars 0.74g 0%
Protein 14.01g 22%
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Reviews

  • Salad Foodie
    Thanks to Amanda Natividad and posting, I finally paired up my Kafta Pita Sandwich with Chef Frosted Flaker's Hummus recipe as a topping for a marriage of flavors made in heaven. Each component complements the other for a perfect Middle east delight! Just scoop, dip or spread the top of kafta pita wedges with the hummus (see photo I posted) and for the recipe I accompanied it with, scroll on this page to "Useful Links".
    I've cooked/tasted this recipe!

    Comments

    • Salad Foodie
      January 12, 2012
      Wow - I've never considered partially cooking the patties before slipping them in the pita bread. But for me, packing the meat in raw allows the moderate amount of melting meat fat to help crisp and flavor the pita breads. Guess that's the charm of sharing recipes here - just like Burger King's ad goes - you can "Have it your way."
      • Frosted Flaker
        January 11, 2012
        This is an absolute treat - what a great alternative to a hamburger, and potentially a bit more healthy. I also believe it's even a bit tastier than a hamburger, since the added ingredients heighten the overall experience. If you've never tried it but are curious as to what it's like, just think of it as a 'Mediterranean style hamburger'.

        Footnote: I personally sometimes pause at step 2 and cook the meat patties (without pita) in the oven for at least HALF the baking time, take them out THEN insert them into the pita (step 3) and cook for the remaining time. This method allows for a drier pita in the end result. If trying recipe for the first time, you might want to experiment with both ways to see which end result you prefer best.

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