National Dish of Syria Kibbeh
|For the Dough:|
|bulgur wheat||1 ½ cups|
|ground lamb||1 lb.|
|medium yellow onion (peeled and cut into wedges)||1|
|bharat seasoning (Middle Eastern spice mix)||1 ½ tsp.|
|canola oil (for frying)||6 cups|
|For the Filling:|
|ground lamb||1 lb.|
|pine nuts||½ cup|
|bharat seasoning||1 ½ tsp.|
|sprigs parsley (chopped)||6|
The national dish of Syria is Kibbeh, a meat-filled croquette. Kibbeh dough is made from bulgur wheat and is typically filled with ground lamb. There are many variations of this dish, including one that is eaten raw. Fried kibbeh is the most popular and it is served as a snack or appetizer.
Directions for Preparing Kibbeh
For the Dough
- Lay a cheesecloth or kitchen towel over a medium-sized bowl.
- Place the bulgur wheat in the cloth and cover with cold water.
- Set aside and allow the wheat to soak for twenty (0:20) minutes.
- Use a food processor to pulse the ground lamb, then transfer this to a bowl.
- Add the onion wedges to the food processor and pulse until minced, then set aside.
- Drain and squeeze the excess liquid from the bulgur wheat and add it to the bowl of lamb meat.
- Add the Bharat seasoning and minced onion to the lamb and wheat.
- Mix all of these ingredients until it forms a thick paste.
- Add a teaspoon of cold water if the mixture is too dry.
- Roll the mixture into balls the size of golf balls, then place them onto a cookie sheet and refrigerate until they are ready to be stuffed.
For the Filling
- Toast the pine nuts in a pan, then set aside to cool.
- Brown the second pound of ground lamb in a pan.
- Add the pine nuts, chopped parsley, and a teaspoon of Bharat seasoning to the lamb meat.
- Season with adequate salt, then turn off the heat and set aside.
- Remove the Kibbeh dough from the refrigerator.
- Press a hole into the center of each ball and thin out the edges with the fingers until a cup-shaped pocket forms.
- Stuff each with a tablespoon of lamb meat filling and shaping into a torpedo or football.
- Heat the canola oil in a large Dutch oven pot and fry the Kibbeh until golden brown, flipping as necessary.
- Place the Kibbeh on a rack to cool.
- Serve Kibbeh with labneh, cucumber slices, and sprigs of mint.
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