Sfeeha (Lebanese Meat Pies)

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Note to self: The first time I had this was off the highway at a Syrian grocery store whilst on a road trip to Tampa. And it was AMAZING! The older couple who ran the store were so sweet and accommodating and gave us a few of these meat pies along with some cheese boats. This recipe is in honor of those super kind and sweet people who decided to feed some travelers. If you have a chance, check out their store Damascus Gate Ethnic Grocery Store in Jacksonville, FL! You won’t regret it! I was inspired and adapted the Lebanese sfeeha recipe from internationalcuisine.com and it came out super delicious.

Ingredients:

Dough Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 1/4 tsp of yeast or one packet
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp oil
  • ½ cup warm water

Meat Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 ½ cups onion finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 bunch cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes with the juices drained
  • ½ tsp allspice
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp Urfa pepper
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp cloves
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • ½ tsp fenugreek
  • ½ tsp ginger powder
  • 2 tsp salt
  • ½ cup pine nuts
  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil
  • Optional garnish: Freshly chopped cilantro and feta cheese

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl mix flour, sugar, and yeast.
  2. Pour warm water and mix until just combined.
  3. Take out dough onto a floured surface and knead for 5 minutes.
  4. In a medium oiled bowl, add dough, cover and let it rise for about an hour.
  5. In a pot on medium heat, add 2 tbsp olive oil, 1 tbsp minced garlic, 1 1/2 cups of diced onions and sauté until translucent.
  6. Add all of the spices, mix well and cook for a few minutes. You can add about a tbsp of olive oil if the spices are sticking to the bottom.
  7. Add 1 lb of ground beef and mix well.
  8. Add tomatoes, and cilantro. Lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
  9. While the beef is cooking, Take out the dough onto a floured surface and knead for about 1 minute.
  10. Divide the dough into 12 pieces, and roll each ball into a thin circle.
  11. Lay all the dough circles on top of each other and cover until ready to use.
  12. Take out the filling into a bowl and let it cool down to room temperature.
  13. In a pan, toast ½ cup of pine nuts until lightly browned and toasted. (Be careful not to burn them!)
  14. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  15. Place dough circles onto a parchment lined baking tray, and press meat mixture onto the dough with a fork so the meat adheres to the dough.
  16. Top with toasted pine nuts, press into meat with a fork and place into the oven for 10 minutes.
  17. Garnish with freshly chopped cilantro and feta cheese (optional) and enjoy!

This recipe was adapted from: https://www.internationalcuisine.com/lebanese-sfeeha/

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