(Kusbasi Kebabi)
This recipe for lamb kebabs is a local specialty in the city of Gaziantep, Turkey. The food there blends the best from Turkish, Armenian, Arabic, Jewish, and Kurdish cooking.

Yield: serves 4-8


  • 1 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp. Turkish hot pepper paste
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 tsp. <a href=””>Turkish/ Herb and Spice Mix</a>
  • 12 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 lb. lean lamb loin
  • 4 long green Italian peppers, halved lengthwise, seeded, ribs removed


  1. Mix together tomato paste, pepper paste, 3 tbsp. olive oil, garlic, Turkish Herb and Spice Mix, and pepper in a nonreactive bowl. Cut lamb into 1″ cubes, then butterfly each cube. Add lamb to marinade and stir to coat evenly. Cover and refrigerate for 9–12 hours, turning meat occasionally.
  2. About 2 hours before serving, remove lamb from marinade; slide about 3 pieces onto each of 8 long metal or wood skewers (soak wood skewers for 1⁄2 hour in water before using) and brush with oil. Cover and let meat come to room temperature.
  3. Brush peppers with oil. Heat a lightly oiled grill pan over medium heat and grill peppers until browned and soft, about 7 minutes per side. Set aside.
  4. Grill lamb in same pan over medium heat until browned, about 2 minutes per side. Serve with grilled peppers, if you like.