Whilst we love the simplicity and ease of Australian food stylist and chef Donna Hay’s recipes and style of cooking, sometimes Elldrew like to embellish a recipe to better suit the occasion. Her original recipe for lamb, cumin and chilli parcels sounded delicious however we wanted to create a similar dish, with a Moroccan infusion, so using the foundations of her recipe we’ve made a lamb and cumin parcels adaptation, which we hope you will enjoy as much as we did. We used shortcrust pastry but frankly, filo or puff would work equally well. We also made smaller two-bite sized parcels to add an extra level of sophistication (perfect for handing out at a cocktail party).
- 500g lean lambs mince
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small eggplant (200g), diced
- 1 small brown onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- Sea salt and cracked black pepper
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- ½ tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
- ⅓ cup (55g) dried currants
- 1 tbsp finely grated lemon rind
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- Handful of parsley – finely chopped
- Handful of coriander – finely chopped
- Large pinch of saffron soaked in 150ml warm water
- 4 sheets shortcrust pastry, home made or shop bought (it will depend on thickness of pastry used, amount of filling per parcel and quantity needed)
- Poppy seeds to decorate
- Preheat oven to 180°C.
- Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan over high heat. Add the eggplant, onion, garlic, salt and pepper and cook for 6-7 minutes or until lightly golden.
- Add the mince to the pan and cook until broken apart and lightly browned.
- Add all the spices (except the fresh parsley and coriander), including the water from the saffron and cook for a further 10 minutes.
- Add the parsley, coriander, currants, lemon rind and juice, stirring into the mince mixture. Add additional salt to taste if needed.
- Transfer to a large bowl, lined with absorbent paper to soak up any excess juices, allow to cool.
- Once cooled/room temperature, fill your chosen pastry and fold into the required shape. Seal the edges (we used a fork to combine the layers).
- Brush the pastry with egg/milk/butter glaze (depending on your preference and the pastry used); sprinkle with the poppy seeds.
- Place on large baking trays lined with non-stick baking paper and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until golden and cooked through.
- Serve warm with a dipping sauce of your choice, we found Tzatziki complemented the Moroccan flavours.
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