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Keftedes with Herby Zingy Chèvre Dip

Keftedes with Herby Zingy Chèvre Dip

Keftedes, or lamb meatballs, are a traditional Greek appetizer most commonly served in mezze platters. Use herb pastes instead of fresh herbs for best texture and flavor.


Herby Zingy Chèvre Dip

  • 8 ounces fresh chèvre
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice from about 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons garlic paste
  • 2 teaspoons parsley paste
  • ¾ teaspoon cilantro paste
  • Salt to taste (up to ½ teaspoon)


  • 2 pounds ground lamb (or a mixture
  • of 1 pound ground beef and 1 pound
  • ground pork)
  • 1 medium red onion grated
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon grated Kefalotyri a salty, Greek-style cheese or Pecorino
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¾ teaspoon garlic paste
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ¼ teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1-2 cups olive or canola oil for cooking


For dip

  • Combine ingredients in a medium bowl until smooth. Add salt to taste. Refrigerate until ready to serve, up to 3 days. Makes about 1 ½ cups.

For meatballs

  • Use your hands to combine everything except the flour in a large mixing bowl. Portion meatball mixture into one-quarter cup sized balls using a cookie scoop. Flatten meatballs into a disc shape using your palms and place on a half-sheet pan.
  • Add flour in an even layer to a second half-sheet pan. Coat meatballs evenly in flour and shake off any excess before transferring back to the first sheet pan.
  • Heat cooking oil over medium-high in a large braising pan. Fry 9 meatballs for 3-4 minutes on each side until brown. Test for internal temperature of 145°F. Repeat to cook remaining 9 meatballs. Serve hot on top of a thick layer of herby zingy chèvre dip.

Jenny Bravo

Jenny Bravo is a food photographer and the owner of a production studio and online home decor store in Portland, ME. Having started her career out of culinary school as a private chef, she is passionate about developing simple and elegant seasonal recipes.

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