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Meats that start with a "K"

This is a guest post from my friend and fellow chef Tudie Johnson, who does amazing things with plant-based meats.

Meats that start with the letter "K". Some of you will remember how back in the eighties new fake crabmeat was popularized in the US. People in the food business called it Crab with a "K" aka Surimi. It's a fish paste that's extruded and colored to resemble crab leg meat. Crab, it's not! Sushi bars and other restaurants started using it in California rolls and other crab dishes in place of real crab meat. They were cheaping out!

So... on my family's quest to no longer eat livestock, we eat meat with a "K". Now you get it, right? The new meat substitute products have been engineered to mimic ground beef. Some stay pink when cooked, all are really juicy and have great texture. So if you are Jonesing for a Burger or Meatballs and spaghetti just like your mom made, try substituting one of these products. I've cooked Impossible Burger, Beyond Meat, Lightlife, Pure by Farmland, plus sausage type products like Field Roast and the ones made by Tofurky.

I have also bought the pre-cooked crumbles and Pepperoni with a "K" (tasteless in my opinion) I grew up working on a cattle ranch so beef has been in my blood and on my menu for a long time, but not anymore! I also use dry TVP (textured vegetable protein) which you can soak before cooking and even used chopped walnuts to make taco "meat" filling with.

Out of all the meals with a "K" I like the Impossible Burger the best so far. It behaves like ground beef and is a little sticky so you don't need to add any binder like egg to make a burger, meatloaf, meatballs, kebab, etc. It holds together and grills well either over live fire or gas BBQ or in a groovy grill pan or cast-iron skillet, all depending on how you like your burgers cooked.

Kofta Kebab has Persian roots and is usually made with ground beef and/ or lamb. Mine is now made with Impossible Burger, lots of garlic, onion, parsley, mint, and warm Middle Eastern spices. Skewer, grill, and brighten with a squeeze of lemon. Serve with Pita and delicious additions like Tzatziki, Hummus, Greek Salad, Garlic Mushrooms, and Feta Cheese. Damn Delicious! Meat eaters, I challenge you to give this a try, you won't be disappointed.

Chef Tudie's Impossible Kofta Kebab

Chef's Tip: Cook a small piece of the seasoned meat mixture before forming to adjust seasonings if needed. Serve with your favorite Pitas, Tzatziki, Hummus, Feta and Greek Salad

Serving size: 6


2 (12-ounce) packages impossible Burger Meat

1/2 cup onions minced

4-6 each garlic cloves minced

1/2 cup fresh parsley chopped

1/4 cup fresh mint leaves chopped

1 teaspoon ground allspice

1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon of sea salt

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs


1. In a large mixing bowl, add all ingredients to the Impossible Burger mixture. 2. Mix well to make a sticky cohesive mixture. 3. Refrigerate at least one hour for flavors to meld before cooking. These can be prepared a day in advance of cooking. 4. Using an ice cream scoop or large spoon, divide the mixture into 12 portions. 5. Wet hands and form into a ball and elongate into a 3 inch long flat oval piece. 6. Flatten the mixture slightly and skewer 2 each onto metal or bamboo soaked skewers. 7. Heat a medium-hot grill and wipe with oil to prevent sticking. Grill Kofta Kebabs 3-4 minutes on all sides until browned. 8. Squeeze on a little fresh lemon juice just before serving.


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