Shami kebab

Shami kabab

Shami kebab on a bed of cucumbers, served with pasta
Place of origin Medieval India
Region or state Indian subcontinent
Main ingredients Meat, fish and spices
Variations Many variations exist
Food energy
(per serving)
Vary kcal
Cookbook: Shami kabab  Media: Shami kabab

Shami kabab or Shaami kabab (Urdu: شامی کباب, Hindi: शामी कबाब) is a local variety of kebab from the Indian subcontinent. It is part of the Indian, Pakistani and Bangladeshi cuisines.[1] It is composed of a small patty of minced or ground meat (usually potato or paneer in India, but occasionally beef, lamb or mutton as well), with ground chickpeas, egg to hold it together, and spices.[2][3] Shami kebab is eaten as a snack or an appetizer. Shami Kebab is served to guests especially in the regions of Hyderabad Deccan, Punjab, Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh and Sindh.

Shami kebabs are a popular snack throughout Bangladesh, India and Pakistan.[4][5] They are often garnished with lemon juice and served with sliced raw onions as a side salad, and may be eaten with chutney made from mint or coriander.[6] They are also served along with sheer khurma during Eid celebrations.


Shami kebab ready for frying.

Shami kababs are boiled or sauteed meat (mutton or chicken) and chickpeas (chana daal) with whole hot spices (garam masala, black pepper, cinnamon, cloves, bay leaves), whole ginger, whole garlic and some salt to taste until completely tender. Onions, turmeric, chili powder, egg, chopped green coriander, chopped green chillies and chopped mint leaves may be added in preparing kebab. Garam masala powder (ground spices) may be used in place of whole hot spices.[7][8][9]

The cooked meat is then ground in such a way that is fibrous and does not become a paste. It is then shaped into diamond or round patties and is shallow fried.


Shami kebabs may be served with roti along with ketchup, hot sauce, chilli garlic sauce, raita or chutney. Before serving the kebabs, it is also common to dip them in a beaten egg mixture and double fry them. They are also commonly eaten in Hyderabad with ordinary rice or chapati.


The popular etymology in Pakistan is that the name Shami Kebab may refer to Bilad al-Sham, the modern Syria, as many cooks from that region migrated to the wealthy Mughal Empire during the Middle Ages.[10] While the popular etymology in India is that the name refer to word Shaam which means evening in Urdu and Hindi languages.[11]

See also


  1. "Shami Kabab".
  2. "Shami Kebab Recipe".
  4. Mamta Gupta. "Shami Kabab, Meat or Chicken". Mamta Gupta and F2 Limited.
  5. "Spring Shami Kabab". Zabiha Bites. 12 May 2013.
  6. "Sami Kebabs". BBC.
  7. "Shami Kabab Recipe". fauziaspakistan.
  8. Petrina Verma Sarkar (10 December 2014). "Shami Kabab".
  9. "Chicken Shami Kebab". 1 April 2015.
  10. Chef Honey Dukes (5 December 2013). "The "traditional" Shami Kabab".
  11. "Shami Kebab". 23 November 2014.
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