Morocco 2009 - Recipes

Pastilla

Makes two medium pastilles.

INGREDIENTS:
4-6 small onions
2 tbsp olive oil
1 package pastilla papers (or phyllo or strudel dough)
½ cup almonds
½ cup walnuts
¼ cup shelled peanuts (or more if you like)
6 eggs
1 cooked chicken breast
spices:
½ tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
1 tbsp paprika
½ tsp curry
¼ tsp red pepper
¼ tsp ras al hanut

INSTRUCTIONS:
Add other spices as you like. Use cinnamon or powdered sugar for decoration.
Chop onions with medium slice and put into pot or pressure cooker.
Add measured spices, olive oil and water not to cover onions completely (perhaps two cups).
Cover and cook on high heat until onions are soft and water is almost but not completely boiled down.
This takes about an hour (less time in pressure cooker).
Onions should be wet but not watery.
While onions are cooking, grind nuts coarsely in nut grinder.
Open bottle of wine and toast to pastilla.
Shred chicken into medium-fine pieces; remove skin.
When onions are finished, remove from flame.
Add nut mixture, chicken and 6 raw eggs to pot of onions, reserving some egg white. Mix, put back on flame for a few minutes, stir.
Grease pans and preheat oven to 400 F, 200 C.
Place three pastilla papers in bottom of pan.
Cover with an even layer of filling ¼ inch thick.
Add a layer of pastilla paper (you might have to tear a big paper in half).
Add a second layer of filling and then top with a folded paper.
Brush with egg white and tuck ends of bottom papers in to pan.
Sprinkle with a little powdered sugar.
This will be the bottom.
Bake for 20-30 minutes until paper is crispy and golden brown.
Remove from oven and turn over on plate.
Sprinkle with powdered sugar and bake an additional 10-15 minutes.
Remove from oven, flip again and decorate with criss-cross lines or other patterns of cinnamon.
Serve hot on bed of fresh mint leaves. Also delicious served cold.

Recipe from Youssef Boulaalam and Kristina Larson

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