Some skill is needed to make an oval-shaped kibbeh, but do not get discouraged. Kibbeh shells are stuffed and fried or baked, providing a crispy crunchy texture with a delicious flavor. Fried kibbeh are perfect as a first course.
For the kibbeh dough:
2 12-oz Papa George’s 85% lean Pure American Ground Lamb
1 onion (3 1/2 oz ), peeled
1 1/4 tsp salt or to taste
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp black pepper
10 oz fine burghol, rinsed and drained
3-4 fl oz. extra virgin olive oil.
For the stuffing:
8 oz Papa George’s 85% lean Pure American Ground Lamb
4 tbs. extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 oz pine nuts
1 onion (8 oz), peeled and finely chopped
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt or to taste
1 tbs lemon juice (optional)
Oil for frying or baking
Preparation of the kibbeh dough:
In a food processor blend the onion until it forms a creamy paste. Remove from blender and place in a large bowl, sprinkle and mix with the salt, allspice, cinnamon, and black pepper. Squeeze excess water from the burghol, add the onions and mix thoroughly until the burghol has absorbed the seasonings. Add the meat and work the mixture, adding cold water as necessary (about 2-3 tbs or more) to achieve amooth kebbeh paste with good consistency. Continue kneading until kibbeh mixture blends well( if necessary blend in a food processor for a few seconds).
Preparation of stuffing:
In a heavy-bottomed frying pan heat the oil until hot but not smoking; add the pine nuts, saute, stirring consistently, until golden in color; remove with a slotted spoon allowing the oil to drip back into the pan. Reserve. Add the onions, saute over medium-high heat until soft and pale in color (about 2 minutes), add the meat to the onions, cook until meat changes color and lightly browned, return the reserved pine-nuts to the frying-pan, season with cinnamon, salt and black pepper. Stir well and remove filling from heat reserve.
Preparation of the kibbeh shells:
Moisten hands with cold water, take a small portion of the kibbeh dough and roll each portion between the palms of the hands to form a ball. Hold the ball in one hand and with the index finger of the other poke a hole in the center of the kibbeh ball, work around the inside with your finger until you have a thin shell. Fill kibbeh shells with 1 1/2 tbs of the meat mixture (or less depending on the size of your shell), gently reshape and smooth to enclose the filing into an oval shape, moistening fingers as necessary with cold water to smooth the surface of kibbeh shells; place on a side dish and repeat with others until all are completed.
In a deep-frying pan heat the oil until hot but not smoking. Fry kibbeh until they are golden-brown on all sides. Remove and drain on kitchen papers. Serve with hummos or baba ghannouj.
Baking (other cooking variation):
Pre-heat oven to 425 deg. Fahrenheit, lightly brush kibbeh shells with oil, place on oven sheet and bake until nicely browned (about 10-15 minutes)
Makes 8 servings.
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