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Sfeeha – Lebanese Meat Patties

imageThese delicious patties are excellent and can be frozen.

The recipe comes from touristic Baalbek!

 

Ingredients for about 40 to 50 sfeehas

For the dough:

  •  3 cups of flour
  • 2 teaspoons of dry instant yeast
  • 2 teaspoons of sugar
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • Olive oil
  • 1 cup of warm water

For the filling:

  •  3/4 pound of ground lamb (or beef )
  • 1 large onion finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of butter
  • 1/3 cup of pine nuts
  • 3 tablespoons of tahini
  • 3 tablespoons of labneh (or drained yogurt)
  • 1/2 cup of chopped parsley
  • 2 tablespoons of pomegranate molasses
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon of allspice
  • 1 teaspoon of sumac
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper or chili flakes
  • 2 tablespoons of tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon of red pepper paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon of mashed garlic

Preparation

For the dough

In a small bowl, pour 2 ounces of warm water and add the dry yeast and the sugar and mix well to combine; let the yeast bubble up in a warm and enclosed place. Meanwhile, place the flour, baking powder and salt in the food processor bowl. Process to combine well; add 1/4 cup of olive oil and process for one or two minutes until the mixture looks very sandy. At this point, add the proofed yeast mixture along with another 3/4 cup of warm water (add the water gradually); when the dough leaves the sides of the bowl it is ready and you can transfer it to a greased bowl and turn it around to coat it with oil and let it sit in a warm enclosed place to rise for a couple of hours until doubled in size.

For the stuffing

Chop the onion as fine as possible and sprinkle with the salt, allspice, sumac and a dash of cinnamon. Place the chopped onion on a sieve and let its waters come out. In the meantime, place the meat in a bowl and add the salt, pepper and red pepper paste and tomato paste. Add to the meat the chopped parsley leaves, pomegranate molasses, tahini and then the drained onion, labneh (or use drained yogurt) and tahini. Adjust seasoning based on your personal preference. Fry the pine nuts in butter and add to the meat mixture. Cover the meat mixture and set it in the fridge till the dough is ready. Prepare two cookie sheets by lining them with parchment paper.

Making the sfeehas

Roll out the dough and punch it to remove all the air pockets; roll into a large circle, about 1/8 inch (more or less) thick. Cut rounds with a cookie cutter and on each round place a generous amount of filling (about 2 tablespoons). Pinch the two opposing ends of the circle and then the two opposing other ends. Take the back of a spoon and press on the filling to enclose it within the pocket. Line up the pies on a baking sheet. Heat the oven to 500F and bake for about 10 minutes until the pies are golden and the meat is cooked. Serve warm or at room temperature with some yogurt cucumber salad if desired.

 


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