This is scanned and OCR'd verbatim from 'Mediterranean Cooking' by Paula Wolfert. My text recognition software has a bit of a blind spot for v's and w's - I have tried to correct most of it.
Ovals stuffed with lamb, parsley, and fennel
Levantines love to stuff one thing into another. One of the most unusual dishes
is the Arab kibbeh and its Cypriot version, koupas - a blend of ground lean lamb,
bulgur, grated onion, and spices, molded on the index finger into little football
shapes, stuffed, and fried.
In this Cypriot version, the crisp shell is made with very little meat and a
high proportion of well-saturated bulgur. Thc method for making the shell is
unconventional: Bulgur is soaked in salty hot water, making the grains swell
without turning mushy. When mixed with the small amount of meat, it binds
quickly and smoothly and can be molded around thc finger with ease.
MAKES ABOUT 18 3-INCH ROLLS, SERVING 4 TO 6 AS PART OF A MIDDLE EASTERN BUFFET
1 cup fine-grain bulgur
3 cups hot water
1 teaspoon fine salt
3 ounces extra-lean ground leg of lamb
2 level tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black peppcr
1/3 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon olive oil
5 ounces ground lamb shouldcr
2 tablespovns butter
2 tablespoons pine nuts
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup cubed tomato
1/3 cup coarsely chopped flat-leaf parslev
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
Oil for deep-frying
l. Rinse the bulgur to remove any dust; drain and put in a deep bowl. Mix the
3 cups hot water with the salt, pour over the bulgur, and let stand 2 hours.
2. Meanwhile, prepare the filling: place chopped onion and oil in a medium
skillet and cook until golden and soft. Add the ground lamb shoulder and brown
lightly, breaking up the meat with a fork, about 5 minutes. Add 1/2 cup water and
cook, uncovered, over low heat for 15 minutes, or until all the water has evapo-
rated and the meat begins to brown in its own fat. Add the butter and pine nuts
and allow meat and nuts to brown lightly. Add the spices, salt, tomato, and herbs.
Cook 1 to 2 minutes longer, stirring. Remove from the heat to cool. Makes about
3. Drain the bulgur and squeezc to remove moisture. Mix lean lamb with bulgur,
flour, and pepper in the workbowl of a food processor. Process 30 seconds, or
until the mixture mounds on the metal blade. The texture should not be sticky
but firm and somewhat smooth. Place in a bowl, cover, and chill thoroughly
4. To form the koupas: Dip vour hands into a bowl of ice water and pinch off a
walnut-size piece of the lamb-bulgur mixture. Knead gently, then use the wet
palm of the other hand to mold it around your forefinger, making a thin, even
cylinder about 2 1/2 inches long. Seal any breaks by briefly dipping the shell into
the ice water and smoothing the dough. Carfully slide the shell from your finger
with vour other hand. Quickly push about 2 teaspoons of the stuffing into the
shell. Pinch the ends to seal, using a few drops of cold water to help it bind.
Gently squeeze the roll with wet palms to form an elongated football shape. Place
the koupas on a flat tray. Repeat with the remaining lamb-bulgur mixture and
stuffing. Cover the stuffed koupas with plastic wrap and partially freeze for 10
minutes to help prevent the shells from cracking.
5. In a large skillet, heat 1/4 inch of oil to 325 degrees. Add half the koupas to the
skillet. Fry, turning, until they are copper colored and crisp all over, about 5
minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Serve hot or
at room temperature, with lemon quarters to squeeze over the koupas.
I'm not quite sure where the Fennel comes into the recipe. Maybe it should be Dill?
Before the Roman came to Rye or out to Severn strode, the rolling English Drunkard made the rolling English road... G.K.Chesterton