Today’s recipe comes from the only place that it should be coming from…  The city of one of oldest cuisines in the world… The food capital of the Levant and the Middle East… The land of Kibbeh and Kebab…  It comes all the way from Aleppo…

Aleppo (Halab)  is famous for the diversity of food and love of eating. Tourists come from everywhere in the world to taste and experience the Aleppine Food. The cuisine has gained its fame long time ago, hundreds years earlier, when the city was part of the historical network (Silk Road) that connected cities of Afro-Eurasia together.

Originated in Aleppo; kibbeh (or kubbeh as called in Palestine) is popular in other areas of Levant. It is made of minced lean meat, minced onions and bulgur. There are more than fourteen types of kibbeh; the most famous type is fried balls stuffed with meat and nuts. Other types have different shapes and different stuffing, kibbeh can be baked, fried, cooked in tomato soup, in yogurt sauces, or in chicken broth.

I’m very pleased that I’ve learned secrets of  kibbeh from Mrs. Sally Zo’by who has learned  everything about kibbeh from her Aleppine grandmother. I’ve got the chance two weeks ago to be part of what she calls it “Kibbeh Day” that takes place once every two to three months. Obviously, in this day she prepares many types of kibbeh in large quantities and then she keeps them in the freezer.  So kibbeh would be always available whenever anyone in the family craves it…

Among different types of Kibbeh, I chose to start with kibbeh rolls stuffed with pistachio. Why? Simply, it is the tastiest.


  • Kibbeh Dough Ingredients:
  • 250 grams 100% lean beef, minced and very cold
  • 350 grams fine bulgur, soaked and drained
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspices
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoon butter
  • Stuffing Ingredients:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 250 grams beef or lamb, minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspices
  • 150 grams pistachio, slightly crushed
  • 1 egg


For kibbeh dough: place onions, bulgur, and dough spices in a food processor  Process them all for two minutes until become fine. Set the mixture aside.

Place the meat in the processor and process for two minutes. Add the meat to the mixture of onions and bulgur. Knead the whole mixture very well using your hands. Add some cold water while kneading in order to make a moist and well compact mixture. Keep the dough cold until you need to use it. (It’s preferable to keep the dough in refrigerator for couple of hours).

For the stuffing: heat olive oil in saucepan, add onions and stir over a medium heat until they become slightly golden. Add meat and spices. Stir from time to time until well cooked. Place cooked meat and onions in a bowl. Add crushed pistachio and the egg, and mix very well.


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For rolling process: divide kibbeh dough to three parts. Spread each part over a plastic sheet (add some water drops to the sheet). Put another plastic sheet over kibbeh dough. Using a rolling tool, make a thin layer of kibbeh dough. Remove top plastic sheet. Using a knife, make a rectangular shape of kibbeh (about 30 X 15). Add about 4 full tablespoon of stuffing and spread it across the kibbeh width. Using the lower plastic sheet, roll kibbeh forward toward stuffing while pressing in order to get a solid kibbeh roll.

Grease kibbeh roll with butter from all sides and place it into an oven-proof tray. Bake kibbeh rolls in a preheated 180 c degrees oven for about 20 minutes or until they become brown-golden. Brush kibbeh rolls with butter from time to time while baking (2 to 3 times).

Set them aside for about 15 minutes and then cut them into small rolls. Typically it’s served hot with tabbouleh and hummus paste.

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