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When Hanger Strikes

  • Writer's pictureMari

Afghan Inspired Kabob Platters

Updated: May 18, 2021

Afghan food is a big thing in my hometown of Mississauga, but where I currently live in Alberta, we have zero Afghan food. Once in a while I'll get a craving, so I decided to replicate it at home. This is a very simplified version, but definitely hits the spot. The sides are what makes this dish - don't skip em!

Makes 6-8 servings


For the Kabobs

1.1 lb/500 g ground lamb

1.3 lb/600 g ground beef

1 medium onion, grated

4 cloves garlic, grated

3 tbs parsley stems, minced

1 egg

1 tsp ground turmeric

1 tsp sumac

1 tsp paprika or chili powder

1 tsp dried mint

1/2 tsp allspice

2-3 tsp salt

1-2 tbs olive oil

For the Tomato Chutney

2 tomatoes

1/2 a small white onion

1/3 cup cilantro (stems okay)

1 clove garlic

1 or 2 green chilies, or 1 deseeded jalapeño/serrano pepper (optional)

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp sugar

2 tbs olive oil

2 tbs white vinegar

For the Garlic Sauce

1 tbs butter

2 cloves garlic

1/2 cup plain yogurt (6%)

1 tsp dried mint

A pinch of salt

1 tbs water

To Serve

1 tbs butter

1 tsp sugar

3 carrots, shredded or thinly sliced

1/4 cup good quality yellow raisins

1/4 cup pistachios

1/4 cup almonds

6-7 cups cooked sella rice


1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Combine all of the ingredients for the kabob except for the olive oil in a large mixing bowl. Knead the kabob mixture for 3-5 minutes. until it looses it's shininess and become matte. Form into 28-30 log shaped kabobs, and lay them on a parchment or foil lined baking tray.

2. Preheat a grill pan or cast iron skillet over medium high heat. If you don't have a cast iron pan, you can use a regular one, but you may need to increase the amount of oil you use. Add some of the olive oil to the pan, and once the oil begins to shimmer, place about 9-10 kabobs in. Allow the kabobs to get a nice sear on all sides, about 1-2 minutes per side. Remove the kabobs from the pan and return to the baking tray. Repeat until all kabobs have been seared, then bake for 15-18 minutes. While the kabobs bake, prepare the sides.

3. Make the tomato chutney. Put the tomatoes, onion, cilantro, green chili, and garlic in a mini food processor. Pulse until you have a chunky chutney, a little bit thinner than a salsa consistency. Transfer the contents of the processor to a bowl, then stir in the olive oil, vinegar, salt and sugar. Taste and adjust for seasoning. Store in the fridge until ready to use.

4. Make the garlic yogurt sauce. In a frying pan over medium heat, sauté the garlic in the butter until light golden and fragrant, 2-3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl with the yogurt, dried mint, salt and water. Mix well to combine. Set in the fridge until ready to use.

5. To serve the kabobs, heat up a large frying pan over medium high heat. Add the remaining 1 tbs of butter and sugar to the pan. Once the butter is hot, add the carrots and sauté for 3-4 minutes, until they just begin to soften. The sugar will help caramelize the carrots and allow them to brown around the edges slightly. Add the almonds, pistachios and raisins to the pan, and continue to sauté another 4-6 minutes, stirring constantly to prevent the nuts from burning. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and remove from heat. Put the carrot raisin mixture over top the cooked rice. Serve the rice with the kabobs on top or on the side, and with the tomato chutney and garlic yogurt sauce on the side. Enjoy hot.


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