Shami Kabab or Kebab

(Mutton Cutlets or Ground Meat Patties)

A Shami Kebab is a small patty of minced beef, mutton or chicken and ground chickpeas and spices. The origin of the Shami Kabab or Kebab is a mystery. One argument suggested that Sham refers to Syria and literally these kebabs means Syrian kebabs in Arabic.

Another source states that Sham is evening in Hindi like that. Shami kebabs are very popular dish in India, Pakistan,and Bangladesh. Shami kababs are generally garnished with lemon juice and/or sliced raw onions, and are usually eaten with chutney made from mint leaves or coriander. It is one of the famous dishes for Muslim Eid festival. This is called either, Shami Kebab or Shami Tikki, Shami Tikiya depending on the regions of India.


  •  1 lb (455g) ground meat (minced beef or mutton)     
  • ¼ cup chana dal (split peas or gram dal)    
  • 2 medium onions (finely chopped)      
  • 2 green chilies (chopped)     
  • 2 inch piece ginger    
  • 5 cloves garlic     
  • 1 ½ cup water      
  • 1 egg (beaten)     
  • 1 tbsp. chopped coriander leaves      
  • ½ tsp. tumeric powder (huldi)     
  • ½ tsp. garam masala  
  • ½ tsp. red pepper  
  • 1 tsp. salt      
  • oil for frying


  • Wash chana dal, and soak for atleast an hour before starting to make kababs.
  • In a sauce pan, heat 2 tablespoons of oil and add half of the onion to sauté until they turn colorless.
  • Then add meat, chana dal, garlic, half of the ginger, tumeric, red pepper, salt and water.
  • Mix well and cook on medium heat until it comes to a boil.
  • Then reduce heat to low, and cook uncovered for about half an hour until meat and dal are tender.
  • Increase the heat and stir until water dries up. (Mixture should be dry).
  • Let it cool and put the mixture into a blender or food processor and grind to a smooth paste.
  • Place the mixture into a large bowl.
  • Then add a egg, garam masala, green chilies, onions, coriander leaves and the other half of the very finely chopped ginger piece.
  • Mix well with hands. Then shape into patties about 2 inches by half inch size.
  • In a non-stick frying pan, heat 3 tablespoons of oil and fry the patties two at a time on low heat until golden brown.
  • Turn them very gently and fry the other side. Repeat until all the patties are done.
  • Place the patties on a serving dish and garnish with onions, lemon twist and fresh mint.
  • Serve hot with mint or coriander chutney.