In my continuing search for uses for the superb French puff pastry from Trader Joe’s, I found another High Holiday-appropriate dish on the NYT Cooking site, an Israeli dish of seasoned ground beef encased in puff pastry.
Reading the comments and anticipating the flavors, I made so many changes that I honestly have to call this recipe my own. We just partook and I am farklempt – delicious beyond all my expectations, and plenty of leftovers to ejoy during the week:
Pastel – Israeli Meat Pie in Puff Pastry
1 package Trader Joe’s puff pastry
2 T olive oil
1 lb each ground lamb and lean ground beef
2 large carrots, 2 medium sweet onions, and one small shallot chopped finely
1/3 cup pine nuts
1/3 cup golden raisins
Seasonings (suggested, but to taste): 1 T kosher salt; 1 t black pepper; 1 t smoked paprika; 1 t cumin; 1 t ras el hanout; 1 t ground sumac; 1 t Za’atar; 1-1/2 t cinnamon; 1 t allspice; 1/2 t ground ginger; 1 t dill weed
1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
2 T toasted sesame seeds
Heat olive oil in large skillet (12″ cast iron) on medium heat and sauté carrots, onions and shallots until softened, about 8 minutes. Add the ground meats and all seasonings and sauté another 10 minutes or so until meats are browned. Remove to a large bowl, add the pine nuts and raisins, and allow to cool.
When mixture is cool, add two lightly beaten eggs. Line the bottom and sides of a 2-quart oven-proof baking dish, about 8-9 x 11″, with one sheet of the puff pastry. Using a slotted spoon, add the the meat mixture into the pastry-lined pan with just some but not all of the liquid in the mix. Sprinkle the top with the chopped parsley and lay the second sheet of puff pastry over it, pinching around the edges to seal it. Chill 1-4 hours.
When ready to bake, preheat oven to 400. Beat the remaining egg and brush the top layer of pastry with it. then sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake for 40 minutes, until crust is golden, and allow to rest for 15-20 minutes before cutting to serve.