Moroccan Lamb Filo Fingers



These were one of the dishes at my recent Moroccan themed dinner party. This was the dish that got me much hand clapping. And I have to say, if someone had made me them I would have been mightly impressed too. They are utterly delicious. They’re pretty easy to make, but there is a bit of fiddling about with Fillo pastry which isn’t the easiest to work with. I guarantee that if you’re looking a bit fancy and not to mention, mouthwateringly tasty, for a party then make these!



1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion (finely chopped)
350g lean minced lamb
2 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cinamon
1/2 teaspoon paprika
pinch of saffron threads (infused with 2 tablespoons boiling water)
1 teaspoon harissa paste (or 1 teaspoon chilli powder)
2 tablespoons fresh coriander (chopped)
2 tablespoons fresh flat leaf parsley (chopped)
1 egg
6-8 sheets filo pastry (thawed)
90g unsalted butter (melted)
1 tablespoon sesame seeds

Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a moderate heat. Add the onions and fry for 3-4 minutes until golden. Increase the heat and add the garlic and lamb and cook for a further 5 minutes, breaking up any lumps with a spoon. Add the cumin, ginger, paprika, cinamon, saffron (in water), harissa, coriander and parsley. Season with salt & pepper and stir for 1 minute to combine. Remove from the heat. Drain in a seive, return to the pan to cool then add the beaten egg and combine well.
Melt the butter and have at hand. Filo pastry needs to be worked with fairly quickly to avoid drying out so. With a ruler and knife cut the sheets in a pile to make at least 24 at a size of 13 cm wide by 30cm long. Cover the pastry with a clean tea towel. Now, take 1 sheet of pastry and brush with the butter, place another sheet on top and butter it too. Add 1 tablespoon of the mince mixture to the end nearest you leaving a gap on either side. Begin to roll the pastry up, carefully fold in the left and right edges and continue to roll the pastry. Place on a dish while you quickly repeat this process for the remaining mince mixture. You should make about 12 fingers.
Brush with a little more butter and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Heat oven to 180ºC and bake the fingers on a baking sheet for 15 minutes until golden and crisp on the outside.

Serve hot.

NOTE: You can prepare these hours in advance un to the point of baking, then just pop in the oven when you’re ready.

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