Çiğ Köfte literally translates to raw (çiğ) meatball (köfte). Traditionally this dish was made with raw meat (hence the name), however health code violations banned the use of raw meat and now it’s made with bulgur instead.

Today, a vegetarian dish made of bulgur (wheat) mixed with tomato and pepper pastes, herbs and spices. Served as an appetizer, snack or can be eaten as meal on its own. I love how you can see the texture of the maker’s hands from pressing into the ‘meatball’. To eat, I prefer to wrap it in a lettuce leaf sprinkled with lemon, others prefer it wrapped in paper-thin lavaş bread with lettuce and parsley.