4 large leeks
1 pound of ground chuck meat
½ cup panko bread crumbs (Japanese bread crumbs, dairy free)
1 bunch of fresh parsley, washed, dried, and chopped (about 1 and 1/ 2 cups chopped)
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 extra large eggs
1 cup of ﬂour
½ teaspoon salt
2 extra large eggs
Saﬄower oil for frying
Lemon wedges for garnish (optional)
- Cut oﬀ dark green tough ends of leeks, leaving only about three to four inches of the lighter green, tender portion, plus white portion. Cut oﬀ little beard at the tip end. Make a slit, lengthwise, partway through leek. Gently open leek to reveal its layers and wash out all dirt and sand under cold running water. Clean them carefully as dirt will tend to get deep inside every layer. Using a sharp knife, ﬁnely chop leeks.
- Place leeks in a pot with a tight ﬁtting lid; cover the leeks with cold water, place on medium-high heat and simmer covered, until soft and tender, about 15 minutes. Drain oﬀ water, and cool completely.
- When leeks are cool enough to touch, using your hands, squeeze out any excess liquid. Place leeks in a medium glass bowl, cover, and refrigerate until completely cold, about one hour or overnight.
- Remove bowl with leeks from refrigerator, add ground beef, panko, parsley, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine. Add 2 eggs one at a time as you check for texture. The mixture should be sticky enough hold together in small balls. Lay out a sheet of heavy duty aluminum foil or waxed paper about 2 to 3 feet long on work surface counter. Form leek mixture into golf ball size balls with your hands. Flatten balls into patties, and place on prepared foil.
- For Frying: Mix together ﬂour and salt on a plate. Lightly dredge each kufte in seasoned ﬂour and return to foil. Beat remaining two eggs in a shallow dish and set next to stove. Place a large plate with paper towel for draining the fried kufte next to stove.
- Heat a 12 inch sauté pan on medium-high heat. When pan is hot, add oil to about ¼-inch depth. Dip each ﬂour coated kufte in beaten egg and add to frying pan. Fry kufte until they are golden brown, about 2 minutes per side, turning only once. Do not overcrowd pan. Use tongs to remove kuftes from oil one by one and place on prepared plate.
- Repeat process with remaining kufte. If oil level gets to low, add more, pouring in along the side of pan. Keep a close eye on oil temperature so it doesn’t get too hot. If kuftes start to fry too quickly, or oil is turning dark or smoking, it is too hot. Do not let kuftes burn.
- Kufte may be fried in the morning, refrigerated, and then reheated in a 350°F oven for 10 minutes before serving. Kufte may also be made a week ahead and frozen in an airtight container. Defrost them in the refrigerator the night before your celebration and reheat as per above. Serve hot with a lemon wedge.
Recipe and photo courtesy of Linda Capeloto Sendowski (www.theglobaljewishkitchen.com), all rights reserved.