Learn how to make the most succulent, perfectly spiced Shami Kabab with Beef Boti for that perfect shredded meat texture and flavour! The IP makes it even easier to make a batch of these Shami Kababs for now and for later!
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Despite my love for most Pakistani Beef Recipes, for most of my life I had fairly lukewarm feelings towards Shami Kababs. The notable exception is when they were spread out on to toast and pan fried - those I loved.
My husbands' family - more specifically his aunt - changed that. We went over on one of our Karachi trips and she made these Authentic Beef Boti Kababs that looked different than the very smooth ones I had grown up on. I took a bite and was actually blown away.
These kababs had actual texture, they were juicy, but not oily, the spices were headier than what I was used to and the hara masala more predominant. They became my gold standard for Shami Kabab and inspired these.
Oh and just in case you're wondering, these kababs are the perfect candidate for Bun Kababs. In my usual recipe I make daal ke kabab, but these Shami Kababs are SO good in there too!
5 Tips for the BEST Kababs
- The meat needs to be very close to 2lbs - changing the amount of meat affects texture.
- Soaking the Daal. Soaking the chana daal overnight or for 4-6 hours helps the daal dissolve completely.
- Fresh Ginger/Garlic: I love my pastes, but fresh it is here. Easy enough too since the food processor is already out!
- Onion in the Mix: This is KEY to tender juicy kababs. I have seen recipes without and tried it without and there is no question in my mind you need to have it.
- Grinding Masala: There is nothing like the magic of fresh masala. I have seen recipes where you roast and grind and while that extra step adds flavour it wasn't phenomenal enough (especially after freezing and defrosting) to be worth the extra work (in my humble opinion).
What Goes in Boti Shami Kababs
- 2 lbs beef boti or stewing cubes
- fresh ginger and garlic
- ground spices
- chanay ki daal or chana daal
- green chilies
Keema/Qeema vs Boti in Shami Kababs
My whole life I have seen Shami Kabab made with Keema. However, here is why I have made a rare departure from what I grew up with to these:-
1.) Shami Kabab made with beef boti are juicier than those made with beef qeema because of how the fat breaks down.
2.) Shami Kabab made with beef boti have a more fulsome texture than those made with beef qeema.
How to Freeze & Store Shami Kabab
Shami Kabab are a popular, easy to store Ramadan friendly item, but like any food that you freeze, you need to be mindful of two things.
1.) Remember to flash freeze your Shami Kabab completely on a tray before transferring them to a bag.
2.) Make sure to take out any excess air from the freezer bag, you can fold over and press as much as you can out.
Shami Kabab keep well in the freezer for 6-9 months depending on how well packed they are.
Here are some things that I learnt during the recipe testing process that I think are a must know if you want to make Shami Kabab
More Ramadan Prep Ideas:
Check out my Ramadan Prep tips in this post, it features some classics and some family favourites!
Made these Shami Kababs? Share what you thought and don't forget to tag me on Instagram @flourandspiceblog ! Also please do rate the recipe below by clicking the number of stars you want to give it!
Instant Pot Shami Kabab
- Instant Pot/Pressure Cooker, Food Processor
- 2 lbs Beef Boti close to exact please!
- 1 cup Chana Daal Soaked 4-6 hours or overnight (preferred)
- 2.5 inch piece Ginger
- 8 cloves Garlic
- ½ cup Diced Onion (half a medium-large onion)
- ¾ cup Water
- 1 Black Cardamom
- 2 Green Cardamom Pods (just seeds or use ½ tsp cardamom powder) Optional
- 1.5 tsp Whole Coriander Seeds
- 1.5 tsp Cumin Seeds
- 2 tsp Whole Black Peppercorns
- 6-7 Cloves
- Small Cinnamon Stick (2 cm or ¾ inch)
- 2.5 tsp Salt (plus additional to adjust seasoning to taste)
- 2 tsp tsp Chilli Flakes or 1.5 tsp Powder
- ½ cup Cilantro
- ½ cup Mint
- 6 Green Chilies
- ½ Medium Onion
- Grind all the Masalas in the Garam Masala section and set aside
- Now quickly run your ginger, garlic and onion from the first section through a food processor/ chopper or dice by hand.
- Combine all the ingredients except the Hara Masala ones in the Instant Pot along with half a cup water, give it a mix and put to pressure for 30 Minutes then natural release.
- When you open the lid to the instant pot there will still be some water left in it (see video) - saute on medium heat for 5-7 minutes until it is fairly dry - the mix will stick to the bottom.
- While it's cooling run the Green Masala ingredients through the food processor to mince. Just a few short pulses will do the trick, you want a fine dice not a paste.
- Once the mixture is cool then for extra meaty kababs you can simply go in with clean hands and mash it together or run it through the food processor to acheive a more paste like consistency (you won't lose the lovely meat texture entirely). Process on high speed for 30 second intervals till the consistency is to your liking.
- Stir in ALL the hara masala - it will seem like a lot but it works.
- Shape the kababs to your preferred size. Tip: Damp palms make this easier so keep a bowl of water near you.
- FRY A TEST KABAB! This step is key so you know that taste and texture are on point and you can make any adjustments necessary.
- Flash freeze on a tray then move to a freezer safe container. Keep well for 6 months.