Recipe courtesy of Violette Khabbaz


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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 19 hr 5 min
  • Prep: 1 hr 20 min
  • Inactive: 16 hr
  • Cook: 1 hr 45 min
  • Yield: 15 servings (4 per person)
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5 pounds flour, plus more for dusting

1/4 cup sugar

5 tablespoons kosher salt

1 tablespoon dried yeast

1/4 cup canola oil, plus more for sprinkling

5 cups cold water


1 1/2 pounds yellow Spanish onions, chopped

6 tablespoons butter OR 1/4 cup canola oil

1 teaspoon allspice

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

3 pounds ground sirloin

8 ounces pine nuts

5 cups canola oil, for frying


  1. For the dough: Put the flour in a mixer and then add the sugar, salt, yeast and oil. Let mix for 3 to 5 minutes. Then start adding the cold water slowly until it forms a big ball (add more flour if the dough is thin/ loose). Let mix for 15 more minutes. Then let the dough rest for 15 minutes. Turn the mixer back on and mix the dough for 15 more minutes, and then let rest for 15 more minutes. Put the dough in a pan and cover the top lightly with canola oil and let sit at room temperature for 1 hour. Then put in the refrigerator and let rest overnight.
  2. Form 7-ounce balls with the dough and roll lightly with flour. Put them in a proof box at room temperature for 2 hours after you roll it. Place the balls side by side and put a cover on it that is very tight so no air is let in, otherwise it will get dry.
  3. For the meat: In a large skillet over medium-high heat, saute the onions in 4 tablespoons of the butter until they are golden brown. Then add in all the allspice, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper. Then add the meat and continue to stir to avoid clumps. Cook the meat for 15 to 20 minutes.
  4. In another pan, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons butter until hot. Add the pine nuts and cook until golden brown, about 3 minutes, stirring so the pine nuts do not burn.
  5. After the pine nuts are cooked, pour on top of the cooked meat. Let the meat cool off at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  6. Take the dough balls and flatten them into a plate shape less than 1/2-inch thick. Use a round shaped cup to cut out 4 dough pieces. Then take 4 tablespoons of the meat mixture and put inside the dough. Fold in half and pinch the dough together.
  7. Heat the oil in a deep-fryer or large pot until it is very hot. Fry until golden, 2 to 3 minutes on each side.
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