We make korme kofta for Nowruz – New Year – along with many other dishes, including colourful rice, lamb curry and haft mewa (seven fruits). Nowruz, meaning "new day", is the first day of spring (the vernal equinox), but in Afghanistan, the festival can last for two weeks. It’s a time of good luck, fortune and new starts.






Skill level

Average: 3 (314 votes)



  • 1 kg lamb mince
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 2 tps garlic, crushed
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • ½ bunch coriander leaves, chopped
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp sweet paprika
  • 1 tsp pepper



  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 625 ml water
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 4 potatoes, quartered

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Combine lamb mince, finely chopped onions, crushed garlic, tomato paste, chopped coriander leaves, egg, ground turmeric, sweet paprika and pepper in a bowl. Shape mixture into small balls. Set aside.

Heat olive oil in a heavy-based frying pan over medium heat. Add finely chopped onions and cook for 4 minutes or until softened. Add 625 ml water, tomato paste, ground turmeric and salt, cover with a tight-fitting lid and bring to the boil.

Add meatballs, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 1 hour. Remove lid, add quartered potatoes and cook for 30 minutes or until meatballs and potatoes are tender and sauce is reduced.



Photography by Olga Bennett.


As seen in Feast magazine, April 2014, Issue 30.