Lunch and Dinner, Main Dishes, Middle Eastern Recipes

Dawood Basha (Kufta and Potato Stew)

In a white plate, kufta balls are combined with chopped potatoes in a tomato sauce mixture. Near them, there is vermicelli rice in the same plate.

When your brain is craving a boost of dopamine, the ‘happiness hormone,’ satisfy it with a comforting meal. And what can be more soothing than the beloved Middle Eastern classic, Dawood Basha (Kufta and Potato Stew) recipe?

Dawood Basha presents a traditional yet distinctive take on meatballs, where you gently simmer mini kufta balls in a zesty tomato sauce alongside tender potatoes. It’s an easy, delicious, and comforting meal. For this specific dish, I added my onions to the sauce for some depth of flavor rather than to the meatballs.


A Hearty and Comforting Combo

The white dish contains some vermicelli rice on one side. On the other side of the same plate, kufta balls and chopped potatoes sink in tomato sauce. They are all topped with pine seeds and parsley.
This is a stew that improves any bad day.


Why Is It Called Dawood Basha?

The name of this recipe is interesting, for it indicates the name of a man, Dawood, which is equivalent to David in Western culture. In addition, Basha refers to a man in a high post. So why is it named so?

The legend says that a famous Basha with a high rank in the Ottoman Empire (modern Turkey) once governed part of the Levant. His name was Daoud Basha, and thus, the dish was named after him due to his fascination with the recipe. This is perhaps why Dawood Basha attains a royal status both in terms of texture and flavor.


Have you ever tried to make something for the first time and ended with a surprise twist? Well, that’s exactly what happened to me when I tried to prepare Dawood Basha all by myself!

I couldn’t ask my mom because she had never made it before, so I gave it a shot. But I was pretty sleepy, so I messed up. I left the meatballs on the stove for too long and ended up with crunchy balls instead. Oops!

But guess what? I didn’t give up and tried it again and let me tell you, they turned out amazing!


Dawood Basha: A Classical Stew

This is a Dawood Basha dish where meatballs are mixed with potatoes and tomato sauce. Near them, vermicelli rice is put in the same dish.
Fuel your brain with some feel-good hormones from Dawood Basha.

Ingredients for Dawood Basha Stew

With a few simple components, you can make these tasty meatballs into a masterpiece dish called Dawood Basha. So what do you need exactly? Well, the ingredients range between the kufta balls and the sauce.

For the Meatballs

Beef: Use 80/20 meat. You can also buy it a little bit fatty. In this case, prepare a mixture of beef and lamb, 50 by 50, to get the right moisture.

Seasonings: Use a combo of allspice, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, coriander powder, paprika, black pepper, and salt.

Parsley: Choose some fresh finely chopped parsley. You can replace it with dry parsley as well.

For the Sauce

Olive Oil: Part of the oil is necessary to sauté the balls while you add the rest to the final mixture.

Onion: You need half of a medium, yellow onion, finely diced.

Potato: Use a big russet potato, peeled and chopped into cubes 1/2 inch thick.

Tomato Sauce: Get a can of tomato sauce. You can also puree overripe red tomatoes and mash them into a diluted tomato mixture.

Water: The water has to be extra hot to make the sauce into the right consistency.

Seasonings: Just as the meatballs, the sauce has to be seasoned with garlic powder, onion powder, bullion powder, the allspice, and salt.

Garlic: The garlic cloves have to be peeled and minced.


The Irresistible Basha Plate

Two plates are placed with some wooden spoons near them. One plate has plain vermicelli rice while the other has vermicelli rice with meatballs, potatoes, and tomato sauce forming Dawood Basha meal.
Dawood Basha is moving upscale.

Steps to Prep

Now, it’s time to get to work. After preparing the required ingredients, all you have to do is to follow these steps precisely. The final product is a satisfying and hearty meal that will please all family members.

First and foremost, start by mixing the ground beef with the spices and parsley. Roll into small meatballs not bigger than 1 tablespoon in size.

Then, in a large pot, add 3 tablespoons of olive oil and heat up before adding the finely chopped onion and the diced potato.

Next, let them cook on medium heat until the onions are translucent and the potatoes develop some color.

After that, make room for the meatballs and add them in, letting them brown for 2 minutes before turning and browning them for another 2 minutes.

At this point, add the tomato sauce, water, and the rest of the spices, mix and let the mixture simmer on medium heat for 20 minutes, or until potatoes are fork tender and meatballs are cooked.

In a separate pan, heat up the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and add the minced garlic. Fry until golden, and then add it to the pot of stew.

Finally, mix well, serve with Middle Eastern Vermicelli Rice (Ruz Bil Shi’iriya), and top it with roasted pine nuts and chopped parsley.




Pro Tips for a Tenderly Cooked Dawood Basha

If you like a tangier taste, add a drizzle of pomegranate molasses to the tomato sauce at the end. You might also leave this to personal taste, and let each person add some to their dish.

Dawood Basha is generally served with Middle Eastern Vermicelli Rice. But you can go without the rice. Then, you might serve it by itself or with pita bread and some fattoush salad.

You can store any leftover Dawood Basha in an airtight container. Make sure you consume them within 4 days maximum.



A Royal Meatball Stew

A stew of meatballs called Dawood Basha is cooked with some potatoes and tomato sauce. All these ingredients alongside vermicelli rice fill a white plate.
Home is wherever this stew is served.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I freeze Dawood Basha stew?

Yes, absolutely! This goes in two ways. You can freeze the sealed cooked stew up to 3 months, and then thaw, heat, and serve. Otherwise, you can prepare the balls and freeze them uncooked. Later, you can use them to proceed with the other steps.

Is using parsley in the meatballs a must?

While minced parsley composes the traditional kufta balls, you can leave it. Simply mix the ground meat with the spices and shape it into balls.

What can I substitute the allspice for?

You can use the Middle Eastern 7 spice. If it is not available, you can simply use the mixture of black pepper, cinnamon, cumin, and ground coriander only.


Must-Try Recipes:

Middle Eastern Kidney Bean Beef Stew

Middle-Eastern Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Yemeni Chicken Mandi

Juicy Chicken Kofta Kebabs

Japanese Beef Curry

Tender Grilled Steak Kebabs

Mulukhiyah Stew (Jute Mallow Stew)

Kousa Mahshi (Stuffed Grey Squash)

Green Bean and Lamb Stew

Palestinian Purslane Stew Recipe


If you’ve tried this recipe, don’t forget to rate it and leave a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience. You can follow me on FacebookInstagram, and YouTube.


In a white plate, kufta balls are combined with chopped potatoes in a tomato sauce mixture. Near them, there is vermicelli rice in the same plate.

Dawood Basha (Kufta and Potato Stew)

Fatimah
This is a Middle Eastern version of meatballs where kufta balls sink with chopped potatoes in tomato sauce. They are drizzled with roasted pine nuts and served with vermicelli rice.
5 from 17 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine Mediterranean, Middle Eastern
Servings 4
Calories 406 kcal

Ingredients
  

For the Meatballs

  • ½ pound 80/20 ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon Allspice
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon coriander powder
  • ¼ cup finely chopped parsley or 3 tablespoons dry parsley

For the Sauce

  • 5 tablespoons olive oil divided
  • ½ medium yellow onion finely diced
  • 1 extra large Russet potato peeled and chopped into ½ inch cubes
  • 1 can tomato sauce 29 ounces
  • cups hot water
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon Allspice
  • 1 tablespoon bullion powder
  • salt to taste
  • 5 large cloves garlic

Instructions
 

  • Mix the ground beef with the spices and parsley and roll into small meatballs.
  • To a pot, add 3 tablespoons olive oil and heat up before adding the finely chopped onion and the diced potatoes.
  • Let them cook on medium heat until onions are translucent and potatoes develop some color.
  • Make room for the meatballs and add them in, letting them brown for 2 minutes before turning and browning for another 2 minutes.
  • Add the tomato sauce and water and the rest of the spices.
  • Mix and let it simmer on medium heat for 20 minutes, or until potatoes are fork tender and meatballs are cooked.
  • In a separate pan, heat up the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and add the minced garlic.
  • Fry until golden, and then add it to the pot of stew.
  • Mix well, serve with vermicelli rice, and top it with roasted pine nuts and chopped parsley.

Notes

  • If you enjoy a more tangy flavor, you can add a drizzle of pomegranate molasses to the tomato sauce at the very end. You might also leave this to personal taste, and let each person add some to their own dish.
  • Dawood Basha is generally served with vermicelli rice. But you can go without the rice. Then, you might serve it by itself or with pita bread and some fattoush salad.
  • The meatballs have to be moist. That’s why you should try to use some fatty meat. If you prefer lean meat, you can add a tablespoon of vegetable oil or ghee to the sauce instead.
  • You can store any leftover Dawood Basha in an airtight container. Make sure you consume them within 4 days maximum.

Nutrition

Calories: 406kcalCarbohydrates: 24gProtein: 14gFat: 30gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 40mgSodium: 1141mgPotassium: 966mgFiber: 4gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 867IUVitamin C: 18mgCalcium: 66mgIron: 4mg
Keyword Meal, Middle Eastern, Middle Eastern Vermicelli Rice, Stew
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

21 thoughts on “Dawood Basha (Kufta and Potato Stew)

  1. Sumiah says:

    5 stars
    Love this dish. Made it for my guests and everyone loved it.

  2. Marwan says:

    5 stars
    i showed this to my wife right when it was posted. absolutely delicious!! we added cilantro in the end too.

  3. Molly says:

    5 stars
    This was delicious!!

  4. Duha Anbari says:

    5 stars
    I made this the other day and it was super good and super super easy!! I loved it! And I had enough left overs for my husband and I the next day!!

  5. Yara says:

    5 stars
    One of my favourite dishes growing up. Made it for the first time the other day following this recipe, which was so easy to follow! I still need a lot of practice but it didn’t taste too far away from eating it as a child made by my mama. Can’t wait to keep making this and perfect my skills. Thank you for making this so easy and accessible to make 🙂

    1. Manal Salah says:

      5 stars
      Love this dish.
      Thank you falasteeni foodie

  6. Serene says:

    5 stars
    I’ve been making this dish for a while, when I say this recipe posted that’s different from what I’ve been doing, I decided to give it a shot. Let me tell you, so much easier and tastier than what I’ve been making! Definitely a keeper!

  7. Hadeal says:

    5 stars
    Queen of cooking Fatasteen Foodie!!
    This dish is one of our favourites.
    My husband and my 16 month old love it.
    I’ve never made this dish before Tuesday and it was a hit my husband asked when I’ll make it again. The seasoning are perfection. I feel like a chef when I make your dishes.
    Thank you for sharing your amazing recipes and love for cooking. You help me so much in the kitchen. Just the thought of “what am I going to cook today?” Alone is a headache and you take that away.
    Thank you

  8. MarMar says:

    5 stars
    This dish is so delicious. The combination of the ingredients crumble into a warm delicious recipe. My family loved it and asked to make it more often da wood basha wa right about this one ♥️

  9. Laura says:

    5 stars
    This was delicious!!

  10. Hadeal says:

    5 stars
    Queen of cooking Fatasteen Foodie!!
    This dish is one of our favourites.
    My husband and my 16 month old baby love it.
    I’ve never made this dish before Tuesday and it was a hit my husband asked when I’ll make it again. The seasoning are perfection. I feel like a chef when I make your dishes.
    Thank you for sharing your amazing recipes and love for cooking. You help me so much in the kitchen. Just the thought of “what am I going to cook today?” Alone is a headache and you take that away.
    Thank you

  11. Tasleema says:

    5 stars
    This was a very straightforward and easy recipe to make and it was full of flavour! Really enjoyed making it for the family and will definitely be making it again InshaAllah. JazakAllah khayr Fatimah! 👌🏼❤️

  12. Yasmeen says:

    5 stars
    Amazing!!!! The whole family loved it!

  13. Yasmeen says:

    5 stars
    Amazing!!!! The whole family loved it!!

  14. Candice says:

    5 stars
    Such a delicious and easy dish. My kids loved this meal and it is definitely a family stable now ! So good and such a hit every time.

  15. najma says:

    5 stars
    Made this with pomegranate molasses, delicious!

  16. Rania Kasi says:

    Can you tell me how big in inches we should roll the meatballs? They look so small in the picture next to the 1/2 inch diced potatoes. Hard to tell. Thank you.

    1. Fatimah says:

      about 1.5 inches-2 inches 🙂

      1. Hadz says:

        Do you double the seasonings if you use a lb of meat rather than half a lb. Thank you!

        1. Fatimah says:

          of course 🙂

  17. Imana says:

    5 stars
    My second time making it and it is such confort food my husband who isn’t usually a fan of kufta loved it and my 3 yr old son devoured it thank you for making this so simple your recipes always come through going to incorporate this into my rotation of recipes

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