Sfeeha is a type of savory pastry dish in which dough is filled with meat and then baked in the oven. It is a very easy dish that can be made on any occasion. It is a well-known dish in the Middle East, especially in Syria. Sfeeha was invented by the Arabs of the Caucasus in the Middle Ages, and this is the reason for its Arabic name. Unfortunately, today there are no Arabs left in the Caucasus to tell their story and defend their heritage… The invention of meat-eaters with dough accompanied the development of the Great Stone Oven (the White oven or the Ammar oven) Forno in muratura, from which the pizza oven was later branched. People invented the large stone kiln as a development of the Roman brick kiln, and this development took place in stages between the 9th and 13th centuries. In those days, there was no oil or gas to operate the furnaces, so all of them used to run on wood. Developing an economical oven that maintains a constant high temperature with the least possible amount of wood; It was a huge step, allowing many stores to open fast-food restaurants at popular prices.
For the dough:
- 2 cups of white flour
- 1 cups of whole wheat flour
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup of olive oil
- 1 cup of warm milk
- 1 table spoon sugar
- 1 table spoon instant yeast
- 1 tea spoon of baking powder
- 1 tea spoon of salt
- ½ cup of water
For the meat filling:
- 1 pound ground red meat (finely ground)
- 1 onion chopped very finely
- 2 cloves of garlic chopped very fine
- 6 tomatoes peeled and chopped very fine
- 1 tea spoon of pomegranate molasses
- 1 table spoon of tahini
- 1 table spoon yogurt
- 1 table spoon of lemon juice
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 table spoon summak
- 1 table spoon black pepper
- 1 table spoon of cumin
- 1 table spoon ground cardamom
- Bring a large bowl to make the dough. Add both the white and whole wheat flours with the salt and baking powder. Mix well then add the olive oil and egg, then knead the dough by hand.
- In a bowl put the yeast and add warm water and sugar, stir to dissolve the yeast and let stand for 5 minutes. This can be done before starting the dough. Then add the yeast to the dough mixture and continue kneading. While kneading add the milk and continue kneading for 15 minutes u the dough holds together and not very soft. Cover with plastic wrap and keep the dough in a warm place for 2 hours so the yeast is active, and the dough is easy to shape.
- In a pot, put the ground meat, onions, garlic, salt, cardamom, cumin, black pepper, summak, tomato and pomegranate molasses. Mix well and preferably mix these ingredients in a food processor.
- Mix the yogurt, lemon juice and tahini in a new bowl and add 2 spoons of water and mix well. Add to the meat mixture and mix well.
- Pre-heat the oven to 356 C
- Knead the dough again and cut into 6 balls, then leave them to rest for half an hour. Sprinkle some flour on a flat surface and roll the dough using the rolling pin and cut into circles.
- Prepare a baking sheet and coat it with oil. Put the dough circles on the baking sheet and brush them with olive oil and add 3 tablespoons of the meat mixtur and spread it on the dough. Cover with plastic wrap and leave it to rest for half an hour.
- Put the baking sheet with the filled dough in the pre-heated oven and bake for 30 minutes. Broil until brow for about 2 minutes.
- Serve while hot.