Shami Kababs (Preparation Time: 2 hours and 30 minutes, Make 12-15 kababs)

Guest Blogger: Ammara F. Khan

The other afternoon, at the play date, Ishita and I ended up discussing similarities in Indian and Pakistani cuisines. We figured that there are numerous dishes which are equally popular in both the countries. 

Shami kababs turned out to be a common favorite!  Here is an easy recipe for tremendously delicious Shami Kababs. In Pakistan, these kababs are mostly made of beef but mutton or chicken are equally good substitutes. 

Shami Kababs are served either as a side dish with the main course (usually Biryani or Pulao), or as a snack in itself served with chutney, ketchup or chilly sauce.

Primary Ingredients

  • 500 gms boneless beef/chicken/mutton in small chunks
  • 150 gms chana dal, soaked in water for at least 2 hours
  • 6 or 7 whole red chillies
  • 5 to 6 cloves of garlic
  • A large piece of ginger
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp peppercorn seeds (whole)
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • 2 small sticks of cinnamon
  • 3 to 4 cloves
  • 1 onion, chopped
Secondary Ingredients

  • 1 egg
  • 1 slice of bread
  • 2  boiled potatoes
  • A small bunch of coriander leaves, coarsely chopped
  • A small bunch of mint leaves, coarsely chopped
  • 2 green chillies, coarsely chopped


  • Boil 4 cups of water in a medium sized saucepan

  • Add meat, chanda dal, chopped onion and all  primary ingredients to the boiling water and cook on high flame 10 minutes

  • Simmer the flame and continue to boil the ingredients for about an hour or longer (the time may vary depending on the meat being used) till the meat is tender and most of the water has vaporized

  • Take the mixture off the flame and allow it to cool

  • Once cool, grind the mixture in a food processor; add coriander leaves, green chillies and mint, and grind again

  • Wet the bread slice, squeeze excess water and add to the mixture in the food processor; grind again

  • Convert the mixture in a large bowl, add mashed potatoes and  beaten egg, combine the mixture and knead with your hands

  • Make small balls and flatten it between your hands to give a round shape, shallow fry the Kababs, till golden brown
So is this how you make Shami Kababs, or you have a different recipe? Please leave your comments/suggestions below.

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