Crispy Moroccan lamb pastilla

Serves 4

  • 100 g couscous

  • 2 onions

  • 4 cloves of garlic

  • 60 g sultanas

  • olive oil

  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric

  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds

  • 250 g leftover cooked lamb

  • 70 g feta cheese

  • 4 large sheets of filo pastry

  • 1 tablespoon flaked almonds or sesame seeds

  • 1 heaped teaspoon icing sugar

  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 4 tablespoons fat-free natural yoghurt, to serve

  • 1 tablespoon harissa or chilli oil, to serve

Pop the couscous into a small bowl, just cover with boiling water, then put a plate on top and leave for 10 minutes. Peel and finely chop the onions and garlic along with the sultanas and place in a large pan on a medium heat with a lug of oil, the turmeric and cumin seeds. Fry for around 15 minutes, or until softened, stirring occasionally. Finely shred the lamb, add to the pan and cook for a further 5 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat. Fluff up the couscous and stir it through the lamb mixture with the crumbled feta, then season to perfection, going heavy on the black pepper.



Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. Working fairly quickly, as filo dries out easily, lay out the pastry sheets on a clean work surface and brush with oil. Divide the lamb mixture between them, laying it along the shortest edge of each sheet. Roll each one up halfway, fold in the sides, then continue rolling up like big cigars. Place them on a non-stick baking tray, brush the tops with a little oil and crumble over the almonds, or sprinkle with the sesame seeds. Sieve over the icing sugar and cinnamon from a height, then bake for around 25 minutes, or until golden and crisp. Serve with yoghurt, rippled with harissa or chilli oil, for dipping. Delicious with a simple green salad on the side.

Nutritional Information

Method

Pretty much every day in the markets of Marrakesh you'll see sweet and savoury pastillas being made and sold for very little money, often with pigeon, quail, goat or, as in this case, lamb, which is big over there. This is a simplified version of that dish that still delivers on flavour and, of course, uses leftovers to make it super cheap. These are to the Moroccans what Cornish pasties and pork pies are to the British – and just as tasty!

Pop the couscous into a small bowl, just cover with boiling water, then put a plate on top and leave for 10 minutes. Peel and finely chop the onions and garlic along with the sultanas and place in a large pan on a medium heat with a lug of oil, the turmeric and cumin seeds. Fry for around 15 minutes, or until softened, stirring occasionally. Finely shred the lamb, add to the pan and cook for a further 5 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat. Fluff up the couscous and stir it through the lamb mixture with the crumbled feta, then season to perfection, going heavy on the black pepper.

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. Working fairly quickly, as filo dries out easily, lay out the pastry sheets on a clean work surface and brush with oil. Divide the lamb mixture between them, laying it along the shortest edge of each sheet. Roll each one up halfway, fold in the sides, then continue rolling up like big cigars. Place them on a non-stick baking tray, brush the tops with a little oil and crumble over the almonds, or sprinkle with the sesame seeds. Sieve over the icing sugar and cinnamon from a height, then bake for around 25 minutes, or until golden and crisp. Serve with yoghurt, rippled with harissa or chilli oil, for dipping. Delicious with a simple green salad on the side.

Tip

Feel free to mix any leftover meat with these beautiful Moroccan flavours – whatever you’ve got will be delicious.
Nutritional Information Amount per serving:
  • Calories 540 27%
  • Carbs 62.2g 27%
  • Sugar 18g 20%
  • Fat 18.8g 27%
  • Saturates 6.7g 34%
  • Protein 28.3g 63%
Of an adult woman's guideline daily amount

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BUYING SUSTAINABLY SOURCED FISH

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Buying sustainably sourced fish means buying fish that has been caught without endangering the levels of fish stocks and with the protection of the environment in mind. Wild fish caught in areas where stocks are plentiful are sustainably sourced, as are farmed fish that are reared on farms proven to cause no harm to surrounding seas and shores.

When buying either wild or farmed fish, ask whether it is sustainably sourced. If you're unable to obtain this information, don't be afraid to shop elsewhere – only by shopping sustainably can we be sure that the fantastic selection of fish we enjoy today will be around for future generations.

For further information about sustainably sourced fish, please refer to the useful links below:

Marine Stewardship Council
http://www.msc.org/

Fish Online
http://www.fishonline.org

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