With Rosh Hashanah, Jewish New Years, lurking around the corner on September 4th I have begun to contemplate menu planning. Since Michael and I are traveling in August, this year I will have to be supremely organized.
No doubt if you are a kosher consumer you may have heard of the scandal/tragedy of Doheney Kosher Meats in Los Angeles. Part of the fall out of this disaster is where are we going to buy the high end, ultra- personal service kind of meat that we have been using for much longer than 30 years? A friend of mine quipped the other morning at breakfast that this, Los Angeles/ Beverly Hills, will be a vegetarian kosher community soon. There are alternatives, but they are not the same quality, convenience, or taste I might add. Chickens are a different story and can still be purchased with less to do. There are many places to buy kosher meat in Los Angeles but they are just not the same.
With all this going on and everyone’s desire to be a little more healthy I thought chicken Pastelicos would be something good to make. Mind you I will still make beef and lamb. So far for this year’s holiday I have already baked 90 beef Pastelicos, 90 chicken and mushroom Pastelicos, 165 cheese and potato Borekas for lunches, one huge vegetable lasagna(also for lunch), one smoked brisket. And so it goes. On August 5th when I return from my food photography workshop I will turn on the extra freezer and start to bake more until we leave again on the 18th.
Yield 90 Pastelicos
1 pound white button mushrooms, chopped small
2 tablespoons oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons oil
2 pounds ground chicken breast
1 teaspoons sea salt
Freshly ground pepper
2 teaspoons Baharat seasoning
1 generous teaspoon ground fenugreek
3/4 cup fresh flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
1/2 cup brown and wild rice blend
1 cup water
1/2 fresh mint, chopped
Dough: (make this twice for 2 pounds chicken )
4 cups flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup ice water
3/4 cup safflower oil
2 beaten egg
Heat a large sauté pan on high heat until hot. Add oil, add chopped mushrooms. Stir and cook until turning golden, season with sea salt and pepper. Set mushrooms aside and to add into filling later. Heat a large sauté pan until hot over medium heat. Add oil and then, onions. Occasionally stir onions with a wooden spoon, sautéing until sweet and golden. Push onions aside in pan, add ground chicken and sauté until cooked through and starting to stick. As you stir onions and chicken, break it up with your spoons so it becomes crumbly with no large chunks intact. Season with salt and pepper, Baharat and fenugreek. Stir in cooked mushrooms.
Next, stir in parsley; add uncooked rice into chicken mix. Stir mixture to blend in rice. Add water, stir, place a lid on pan. Reduce heat to low, let steam until water is absorbed and rice is cooked, about 40 minutes. Add mint and stir to combine. Cool filling down before using, I recommend refrigerating overnight in a covered bowl.
For dough, measure flour into a medium bowl and add salt. In a two-cup (pint) glass measuring pitcher, combine ice water and oil. Whisk liquids to emulsify. Pour liquid into flour and stir with a fork. When dough holds together, use your hands to finish gathering dough into a ball. Dough should be pliable.
Separate dough into 42 to 45 walnut size pieces. Roll each small piece into a smooth ball. With a rolling pin, roll each ball into a circle, no larger than 3 inches in diameter, taking care not to go over edges with the rolling pin and make them to thin. Make the second batch of dough and repeat.
Heat oven to 400° F and line 4 rimmed baking sheets with silpats or parchment paper. Place about 1 tablespoon of filling in each circle. Portion out the filling; it should be just the right amount for 90 Pastelicos. Close the filled circles by folding dough in a triangle shape. Place Pastelicos on baking sheets. Brush all the Pastelicos with beaten egg and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake until golden and crispy about 15 to 17 minutes.