Meatless Lenten Dishes

Peanut Butter Kufteh – a Unique Lenten Recipe

During Lent many take it upon themselves to take a step back and review their lives. Some choose to follow a strict diet forgoing meat, dairy, eggs, alcohol, sweets, and the like.

If you’re one who prefers to follow a strict Lenten diet, you might want to try this recipe which offers a unique blend of flavors.

Some of St. Sarkis Women’s Guild Members (L- R: Robyn, Joanne, Donna, Maro, Betty, Diane, and Noelle)

The Women’s Guild of St. Sarkis Armenian Church in Charlotte, NC reserved one day to gather in the church’s kitchen and prepare a Lenten recipe not known to many – Peanut Butter Kufteh. Since I’d posted this recipe a while back, I was asked to ‘lead’ the project, meaning I would gather the ingredients, and share the recipe. Easily done.

Once the ladies arrived, sleeves were rolled up and work was begun. We had lots of fun while learning from each other in the process!


Peanut Butter Kufteh – a Unique Lenten Recipe

A meatless kufteh with a unique blend of flavors.
Course Appetizer, Main Course
Prep Time 50 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Chilling time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Servings 24 kuftehs (depending on size)


Filling Ingredients:

  • 21 oz. chunky (or smooth) peanut butter 3/4 of a 24-oz.jar
  • 3 cups chopped onions
  • 1 tsp. dried mint
  • ¼ tsp. dried basil
  • pinch cayenne pepper optional
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh parsley chopped
  • ½ tsp. salt

Outer Shell Ingredients:

  • cups fine bulgur #1 size
  • cups oatmeal
  • cups farina Cream of Wheat
  • 3 Tbsp. flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. dried mint
  • ¼ tsp. dried basil
  • pinch cayenne pepper optional
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper
  • 2 ½ to 3 cups hot water


Filling Directions:

  • Mix all of the filling ingredients in the order listed until well-blended. Set aside.

Outer Shell and Shaping Directions:

  • Mix together the bulgur, oatmeal, farina, flour, salt, mint, basil, cayenne (if using), and black pepper; add the hot water a little at a time, stirring to create a workable dough. Knead gently. If mixture is too dry, add a little more hot water.
  • Take a ball of the dough the size of a golf ball. Make an indentation in the center with your thumb and keep opening and shaping with your index and middle finger. Press down in center and sides, rotating until you get a thin shell.
  • To make the shell as thin as possible, line a small plate with plastic wrap, take a golf ball sized piece of the ‘dough’, flatten it into a circle with your hand, then gently lift it off the plastic – while trying not to break it. Keep a small bowl of water to dip your hands into for this process. The water helps ‘glue’ the outer shell together. Place one tablespoon or more of filling in the center, gently encase the filling with the outershell. Finally, smooth the surface with wet fingers, making sure the kufteh is flat on the bottom and slightly rounded on the top.
  • Place shaped kutfehs on a waxed paper-lined tray or plate, and refrigerate for 20 minutes.

Cooking the Kuftehs:

  • While the kuftehs chill, boil water in a large pot with some salt.
  • Remove kuftehs from the refrigerator, and boil, in small batches, for about 10 minutes until all are cooked. Serve immediately.
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