Shish Barak Dough:
2 1/2 plain or wholemeal flour (or a combination of both)
1/4 cup water
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar
Shish Barak Filling:
180g minced meat
10 sprigs coriander, finely diced
1 medium onion, finely diced
salt, pepper, mixed spice
Shish Barak Yoghurt:
6 cups plain Greek yoghurt (or your favourite type)
1 1/2 tbs cornflour dissolved in 1/2 cup water
1 tbs salt
Mix the filling ingredients together in a tefal pot on medium-high heat.
Add a few tablespoons of water and cover. Leave to cook on low heat for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
When ready, dish out and leave aside to cool.
This filling can be prepared in advance.
Combine the dough ingredients in a large bowl and knead to form a soft dough.
Don’t be impatient. I felt it needed more water and ended up with just under 2 1/2 cups of water, which needed 2 7/8 cups flour. Let the dough take it’s time to form. If you really feel it needs more water, add it in by the tablespoon.
Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for 3 – 5 minutes.
Break the dough into 4 segments.
Roll each segment (one at a time) until it’s 2 – 3 millimetres thick (this dough is almost like fresh pasta dough, it really needs to be thin). Of course you can put it through a pasta maker machine, but I don’t have one so I don’t know which setting you’d use
Use a small biscuit cutter, no bigger than 5 cm in diametre (2 inches) to cut out circles in the dough.
Place a teaspoon sized amount of filling in the centre of all the circles.
Fold each circle in half and press down to seal.
Take the corners of the semi-circle and fold them in so one is above the other.
Press down to keep it’s shape. Repeat until the dough is finished.
This shape is similar to tortellini.
Place all the shish baraks on a lightly greased baking tray and place under the grill or in the oven until they’re a faint rosy colour.
This step is optional, but I would highly suggest you do it, because it makes the dish a whole lot more tastier.
If you want to skip this step, the method would be to blanch the shish baraks, drain and leave aside.
In the blender, combine the ‘shish barak yoghurt’ ingredients and blend for 2 minutes on the lowest setting. It should come out runny and frothy up the top.
Transfer to a large pot on high heat. Continually stir at a fast pace for about 3 and half minutes (the timing is important).
You will begin to feel the yoghurt thicken. Turn the heat to low and continue stirring at a fast-steady pace for another 5 minutes.
Add the shish baraks to the yoghurt.
Leave on low heat for a further 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to make sure none stick to the bottom of the pot.
Be Burn Safe: Be careful as the yoghurt will bubble, and stirring it will make it angry (i.e. it will bubble vigourously for a few seconds when you begin to stir)
Add a pinch of salt, I believe the salt will come out after it’s dished up so don’t put in too much.
Optional 1: add fried kibbeh or cubes of pre-cooked pumpkin to the yoghurt just a minute before serving. I placed some cubes in the microwave in a bowl of water, covered with punctured cling wrap on the potato setting which went on for 4 minutes – 40 secs.
Optional 2: add finely diced coriander to the yoghurt a few minutes before dishing up.
Use a large ladle to dish up into a large serving bowl. First try to get out as much of the shish baraks as you can with minimal yoghurt, then when the bowl is almost full, begin to add the yoghurt on top until it’s all at one level.
Awesome tip: eating cooked yoghurt is fantastic, eating it after it’s been bruised with the serving utensil isn’t. If you think there’s too much to eat in one go, then portion the pot’s contents over 2+ bowls. Any left overs = a fresh looking bowl of shish barak.
Shish barak without coriander in the yoghurt;
I’ve put kibbeh in this version of Shish barak
Eat shish barak with rice, of course. Can be eaten hot, or cold from the fridge. Also room-temp works great. If rice isn’t your fancy, you can try skipping it – I did today because I didn’t bother making any and didn’t bother holding myself back from digging in
TAKE TWO: Instead of grilling the shish baraks, fry them and crunch on them as a party food or snack. Dip in your favourite dip, eat as is, or garnish with them (they’re cute!). The entire yoghurt dunking part is eliminated.
When I first heard of this dish last year, I wasn’t keen on trying it, let alone cooking it. Now I encourage everyone to cook it and…