⚽ World Cup 2018 Game 3 – Morocco vs. Iran

Moroccan and Iranian flavors belly dance in this Persian Pastilla. It’s adapted from the sweet and savory pastilla, a popular Moroccan pie, but I’ve added eggplant and substituted the traditional almond for pistachios for a Persian twist.  As you take your first bite, you get the crunch from the flaky layers of the phyllo dough and pistachio, the savory flavors of the chicken and the eggplant, the fluffiness of the egg, the sweetness of the powdered sugar and all perfumed by cinnamon. Eating this will make you feel at home at Casablanca or Tehran.

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Persian Pastilla
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Servings
people
Ingredients
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Servings
people
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Heat olive oil in a large pot and braise the chicken pieces on all sides for a few minutes, then remove.
  2. Add the onions + eggplant + ginger + cinnamon + saffron and cook for 5 minutes
  3. Return the chicken to the pot and add chopped parsley. Season with salt and pepper, then cover and gently simmer over low heat for an hour.
  4. Remove the chicken pieces and shred it, removing the meat from the bones. Set aside.
  5. Reduce the vegetables in the pot until there is almost no liquid remaining. This will take ~ 20 minutes. Add 5 eggs to the sauce and stir constantly on low heat until you have a creamy consistency. Remove from heat. Once it's cooled, mix in the additional 2 eggs.
  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  7. Take a round springform pan and lay a sheet on the bottom and cover the side so that the extra part of the sheet hangs off the side. Brush it with butter. Add another sheet at 45 degree from the first sheet and brush it with butter. Continue adding 4 more sheets and brushing it with butter, each at a different rotation point from the previous sheet.
  8. Place half of the shredded chicken on the bottom, then top with half of the eggplant and egg mixture. Add 6 alternating sheets of phyllo on top, each being brushed with butter.
  9. On top of the new phyllo layer, add the rest of the shredded chicken and the eggplant and egg mixture. Then add a layer of the roasted pistachios and sprinkle with powdered sugar. Fold ends of phyllo over the filling and brush the top with melted butter.
  10. Place the pastilla in the oven for 15 minutes. Remove the springform ring, flip and bake for another 15 minutes or until golden and flaky.
  11. Dust the pastilla with powdered sugar and cinnamon and serve warm.
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