Food from Many Greek Kitchens
by Tessa Kiros
These are very popular in Greece. They are lovely as a meze with a dish of feta and a few other bits and pieces. Of course they are also great with french fries. Many Greeks roll their keftedes in a little flour before frying.
Makes About 35
• 10½ ounces unpeeled potatoes [about 2]
• 1 pound 2 ounces ground beef
• 1 red onion, grated
• 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped Italian parsley
• 1 teaspoon dried oregano
• 1 teaspoon dried mint
• good pinch of ground cinnamon
• 1 egg, lightly beaten
• salt and freshly ground black pepper
• all-purpose flour, for dusting
• olive oil for frying
• lemon quarters, for serving
Boil the potatoes, covered, in plenty of water until they are soft when pierced with a fork.
Meanwhile, put the beef, onion, parsley, oregano, mint, cinnamon and egg into a bowl and mix. Drain the cooked potatoes and when they are cool enough to handle, peel and break up into the bowl. Season well with salt and pepper, then mash everything together with a potato masher. Knead again with your hands to make a compact mix. Form walnut-size balls of about 1 ounce each, but you can make them smaller or bigger if you like. Scatter some flour onto a flat plate and roll the balls lightly in the flour, keeping them in compact balls.
Heat olive oil to a depth of about 1/4 inch in a large nonstick skillet. Add as many balls as will fit to the skillet and fry until they are golden on all sides, flicking them gently to roll over. You will probably have to fry in two batches. Remove carefully with tongs and drain on a plate lined with paper towels. Add a little salt (as fried things are always good with a last sprinkling of salt). Serve hot, with a few drops of lemon juice.