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Safta Yaffa’s Sambusak with Chickpea or Chicken Filling


Sambusak are a traditional Middle Eastern filled pastry enjoyed by Jews who lived in those regions. Here you have a choice of chicken or chickpea filling.


Prepare the Dough

1. Combine the ingredients and knead together well until it forms a unified dough. Cover the bowl with a damp towel and allow to rest overnight.

For Chickpea Filling

1. Meanwhile, submerge chickpeas in water and let soak overnight.
2. In the morning, rinse the chickpeas well, then add to a pot with more water and cook for an hour and 15 minutes (or until the chickpeas are fork-tender). Drain.
3. Process in a good blender (can add a little water if necessary).
4. In a big sauté pan, fry onions in oil (be generous), until the onions brown.
5. Add the ground chickpeas and mix, then add seasonings.
6. Cool the mixture in the refrigerator.

For Chicken Filling

1. In a large sauté pan, fry onion in oil (be generous) until they start to brown.
2. Stir in the chicken. Add the salt and pepper and cook for about 10 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
3. Pour the mixture into a strainer (reserve the cooking oil for later).
4. Cool in the refrigerator.

Prepare the Sambusak

1. Lightly oil a work surface (use your reserved oil, if you have it). Divide the dough in half. Roll each section of dough into a large “hot dog.” Cut each cylinder into three and a half-centimeter pieces.
2. Roll out each piece with a rolling pin. Fill with your desired filling, close, and seal well.
3. Fry the sambusak (use your reserved oil, if you have it) until golden.