Recipe courtesy of Sherryl Betesh

Sherryl Betesh's Laham B'Ajeen (Minced Meat Pies)

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr 5 min
  • Active: 35 min
  • Yield: about 3 dozen
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1 pound (about 3 3/4 cups) all-purpose flour, plus more for sprinkling

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 

One 1/4-ounce package active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)

1/4 teaspoon sugar 


1 pound ground beef

2 small onions, finely chopped 

1 cup store-bought tamarind concentrate

One 6-ounce can tomato paste 

1/2 cup pine nuts 

Juice of 1 lemon 

1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt 

1 1/2 tablespoons allspice 

1 tablespoon ketchup 

1 teaspoon ground cumin 

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper 

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper 


  1. For the dough: Mix the flour and salt in a large bowl. Dissolve the yeast and sugar in 2 tablespoons warm water in a small bowl. Pour the yeast mixture and 3/4 cup water into the flour mixture. Mix together until a soft dough forms, adding more water a little at a time if the dough is too dry. Cover with a towel or plastic wrap and let sit for 15 minutes.
  2. For the filling: Combine the ground beef, onions, tamarind concentrate, tomato paste, pine nuts, lemon juice, salt, allspice, ketchup, cumin, pepper and cayenne in a large bowl and mix until combined.
  3. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly sprinkle a work surface with flour. Roll out the dough 1/4-inch thick. Cut the dough into rounds using a 4-inch cookie cutter. Place the rounds on baking sheets. Spread 1 tablespoon of the meat filling on each round. Bake until the edges are golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes.