Bowl Kebap (Tas Kebabı)

Bowl kebap is one of my mom's specialties, the kind you ask for every time you come home. It's a family favorite in our house too; even the most demanding people love this dish.

Bowl kebap is a very simple recipe. The preparation time is about 15 minutes, but you need to cook the meat in 1-2 hours to make it tender and delicious.

Some people find the way this dish is cooked confusing and for this reason they avoid trying it. I assure you it is very easy. All you need to do before prepping the ingredients is (1) find a bowl with a flat edge that can hold about 2 pounds of meat; (2) and a large pan that the bowl can fit into when turned upside down. Here you are! Are you ready.

serves 4-6 people

~2 pounds of stewed beef or lamb
1-1 1/2 cups diced onions
1 teaspoon or more ground black pepper
1-1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2-3 tablespoons of tomato paste or chilli pepper

2 tablespoons of olive oil

1 tablespoon butter
2 cups boiling water

(optional: 2-3 potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes. Traditionally bowl kebap is made simply with meat, without the use of vegetables. However, sometimes I like the addition of potatoes in this dish. Boiled potatoes in meat juice are an excellent baby food when mashed.)

-For this dish, find a bowl with a flat, even edge, which resists heat and contains all the ingredients. Then find a pot in which the bowl can be turned upside down, as in the photo.
-If you use potatoes, place them at the bottom of the bowl.
-In another bowl, mix the meat, onion, salt, pepper, olive oil and tomato or chili paste with your hands. Go in and make sure the meat is covered all over.
-Add this meat mixture to the bowl, on top of the potatoes. If you don't use potatoes, simply place the meat in the bowl. Depending on the size of the bowl, the meat may or may not rise to the bottom, either way is fine.
– Sprinkle some pieces of butter on top.
-Place the pot on top of the bowl. Securing both the pot and bowl with your hands, turn the pot over so that the bowl sits inside it upside down as in the photo above.
-Since this is how we will cook the bowl of kebap and we don't want the bowl to move, place a heavy container on top to seal or stabilize the bowl in the pot: a full jug, teapot, or kettle filled with water like I did.
-Pour 2 cups of boiling water into the pot to fill between the bowl and the pot.
-Start cooking on high heat. Once you see bubbles on the sides of the bowl, turn it down to low or medium low and cook for 1 1/2 to 2 hours. With really good meat, 1 and a half hours would be enough, however, if you use a less expensive cut, I recommend cooking for 2 hours. In any case, with this method anything will be deliciously cooked for two hours.
-When you turn it off, you need to move the jug, teapot or whatever you put on it, and slowly remove the bowl leaving the ingredients in the pot to mix with the water that has now turned into a delicious juice. If you don't remove the bowl while it's still hot, it may get sucked in and sealed in the pot. If this happens, don't panic, just reheat the kebap bowl. Once it warms up, it will allow you to take the bowl back.

-Serve the kebap in a bowl with any type of rice or cereal, but I must say that it is best with buttery white rice and plenty of red wine.

If you try this recipe, I guarantee it will become a favorite for you too.

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