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Sfeeha from Baalbek Recipe

Sfeeha from Baalbek

Adapted from The Arabian Cookbook

Makes 30 pies


1 tablespoon active dry yeast
3 cups (710 mL) lukewarm water (125 degrees F/50 degrees C)
1 cup (225 grams) unsalted butter, softened
8 cups (1 kg) all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt

1 pound (450 grams) lamb meat from the ribs or ground lamb
1 pound (450 grams) tomatoes, diced
1 1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
Salt to taste
Optional: 1/2-1 red chili and 2/5 cup (12 grams chopped flat-leaf parsley or 2 tablespoons tahini


In a bowl, sprinkle the yeast over the water. Stir to combine, then allow to sit until frothy, 5-10 minutes.

In a large bowl, crumble the butter into the flour. Make a well in the center and add the water with the frothy yeast. Work in the flour to form a smooth dough. Cover with a damp towel and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.

To make the filling: If the lamb is not ground, finely chop. Add to a bowl and mix with the diced tomatoes and chopped onions. If desired, add chili and parsley or tahini.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Lightly grease rimmed baking sheets. Punch down the dough and roll into a thin rectangle. Use a 3 inch wide circle cutter to cut out circles of dough. Add a spoonful of filling to the center of each circle. Press each side partially over the filling to form a square with the center of the filling still showing. Pinch the edges to form four corners.

Arrange the sfeeha 1 inch apart on prepared baking sheets and bake in preheated oven until the meat is cooked through and dough is golden brown, 10-15 minutes.

Serve hot or at room temperature.

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