If you asked me what is the best pie I have ever had, I would point you to this little savory meat pie – Sfeeha. This is the best ever!
Sfeeha is a delicious combination of minced lamb and a tangy tahini sauce baked in dough.
Sfeeha is the specialty appetizer found at every Middle Eastern party. And you can make them ahead of time and freeze them.
My fondest childhood memories of sfeeha is all the aunts gathering in the kitchen to help make sfeeha for so and so’s wedding or for Christmas or some other gathering. They didn’t make 5 or 6 like I did here, nope they made a gazillion…maybe even more.
Here’s how I made my 1/2 dozen.
First the dough. I used my pita bread recipe minus the powdered milk and I didn’t worry about keeping the dough moist. You can also use store bought frozen dough or even Pillsbury biscuit dough in a can if you’re short on time.
I cut the dough to about the size of a golf ball or a little bit bigger. Cover with a tea towel and let them rest.
Then the tahini sauce:
To my blender I added 2 tablespoons of tahini, 3 tablespoons of water, 1 teaspoon white vinegar, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 teaspoon sale and whipped them up. If the sauce is a little thick add a little water and blend some more. It’s okay for the sauce to be a bit watery, it will thicken up in the oven.
Then the meat: I sautéed some onions until translucent. Then add the lamb and the spices. I used seven spices but if you don’t have that you can use allspice, salt and pepper.
Transfer the dough pieces to your baking sheet and place 1 or 2 tablespoons of the meat mixture in the middle of the dough and fold the edges over. You can leave it flat as well. Just spread the meat mixture out leaving a little bit of the edge exposed like you would a pizza.
- ~~Dough Ingredients~~
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 envelope fast rise yeast (I use Bob’s Red Mill)
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1¾ cups very warm water
- 1¼ cups minced lamb or beef
- ½ cup chopped onion
- 1½ teaspoons 7 spices (or 1 teaspoon allspice, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon pepper)
- ~~Tahini Sauce~~
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- 3 tablespoons water
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar
- ~~For the Dough~~
- Add the yeast and the sugar to the warm water.
- Let it proof for 15 minutes. It will get all bubbly and aromatic.
- Meanwhile, attach the dough hook and the mixer bowl to your stand mixer
- Add the dry ingredients to the bowl.
- Add the proofed yeast mixture and 1 tablespoons olive oil to the dry ingredients.
- Start the the mixer on #2 until all is incorporated.
- Now set your mixer on #4 and let it knead for 5 minutes.
- Turn the mixer off and let the dough rest for about 5 minutes.
- Turn it back on to #4 again and let it knead for 3 or 4 more minutes. The dough should clean the bowl.
- Prepare a glass bowl with olive oil.
- Transfer the dough to the oiled bowl.
- Let it rise for 1 hour.
- Lightly flour your work surface.
- Punch down the dough and transfer to your floured work surface.
- Cut the dough into pieces the size of a golf ball.
- Pat or roll them out to less than ¼ inch.
- ~~For the Tahini Sauce~~
- To your blender add all of the ingredients and blend until incorporated. Add a little water if mixture is thick. Adjust salt and lemon to your taste.
- Add to the meat and stir until combined.
- ~~For the Meat~~
- Heat some butter in a skillet on medium and saute the onions until translucent. About 5 minutes.
- Add the spices and cook for 1 minute until aromatic. Add the meat and sauté until no longer pink.
- Fill the dough with the meat mixture.
- Shape as you choose.
- Bake at 400 for 7 to 10 minutes.
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