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Lamb Kofta with Pea Tabbouleh


A new month means a new Tasty Tuesday contributor, and TODAY we are excited to introduce Phillip Messenger of The Meal Messenger!

Phillip left behind a career in finance to follow his heart (and his stomach) to launch his food-based business! The Meal Messenger offers a seasonal menu of meals prepared by Phillip, delivered to your door (in Melbourne).

This month Phillip will share four of his favourite winter weeknight dinner recipes.  He’s kicking off with lamb kofta and pea tabbouleh, which combines traditional Middle Eastern flavours with a fresh and crunchy take on a tabbouleh.

The best bit is, if you can’t be bothered tackling these dishes yourself, Phillip will make them for you! – order online here.

5th July, 2016
Phillip Messenger
Tuesday 5th July 2016

I’m not a classically trained chef, in fact I have no formal training at all, but cooking and the kitchen were always at the heart of my home as a child. My Mother trained at Cordon Bleu in London in the early 1960s, at a time when Elizabeth David was having a huge influence on the food of post war England. This food ethos stayed with my Mother forever, and informed everything she did in the kitchen. Growing up the youngest of four children, it was a bit like growing up in a cooking school, we were always in the kitchen!

It’s no surprise that I ended up working with food, though getting there wasn’t as straightforward. I used to have a regular 9.00 – 5.00 office job, and at this job I would bring home cooked meals for lunch and dinner daily, always making time to sit away from my desk to enjoy them. Everyone at work noticed what I was eating, and almost every day someone would say, ‘I’ll pay you to make extra lunch for me!’ This inspired my business, The Meal Messenger.

I suppose with a surname like Messenger it was almost preordained that I would one day be making deliveries. The Meal Messenger cooks and delivers wholesome meals that taste like home cooking. It’s the kind of food your Mum would cook, if your Mum was Nigella Lawson! The menu is designed to be flexible, so you can use it when and where it suits you.

Over the next four weeks I’ll share some of the most popular items from our winter menu. First up is our lamb kofta with pea tabouleh. This recipe will often appear on the spring menu and even during the first few weeks of summer while peas are at their best, but you can just as easily use frozen peas, making this a great meal in the depths of winter when you tire of soups and stews, and crave some crunch.

Tasty Tuesday shoots are generously supported by The Establishment Studios.


For the kofta (serves 8)

  • 1kg lamb mince
  • 1 small brown onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh mint
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander

For the tabbouleh (serves 8)

  • 180g course burghul wheat
  • 450g frozen peas
  • 1.5 cups loosely packed mint, flat leaf parsley and coriander
  • 3/4 small red onion, finely diced
  • 3 lemons
  • 1.5 garlic cloves rougly chopped
  • 3 tsp sumac
  • 4 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

For the sauce

  • Yoghurt
  • Sumac
  • Garlic
  • Lemon juice


For the tabbouleh

Soak burghul wheat in a bowl of very hot water for 5 mins, then drain. Blanch the peas until just tender and drain. Combine peas, wheat and herbs in a large bowl.

Combine onion, lemon juice, garlic, sumac in a bowl for 3 minutes, then add the oil and season to taste and dress the salad.

For the lamb kofta

Pre-heat oven to 180°C.

Place mince, onion, garlic, chilli, mint, parsley, paprika, ginger, cumin and coriander in a bowl. Mix and combine. Shape into sausages and thread sausage onto skewer, place on a large baking tray and refrigerate for 20 minutes.

Seal each side of koftas on a BBQ, if you don’t have access to a BBQ use a hot skillet pan. Once sides are sealed, pop the kofta on baking tray in pre-heated oven at 180°C for 10 minutes.

For the sauce

Mix yogurt, sumac, lemon juice and garlic.

Phillip Messenger of The Meal Messenger. Photo –Eve Wilson. Styling – Lucy Feagins. Styling assistant – Nat Turnbull.

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