A Type of Ahrash – Spiced Meat Patties with a Sauce

A Arabic pattie recipe found on “Let Hem Boyle
A Type of Ahrash - Spiced Meat Patties with a Sauce

Saara who runs ‘Let Hem Boyle’  writes: This is the recipe that was used by Sayyid Abu al-Hasan and others in Morocco, and they called it isfîriyâ.

Take red lamb, pound it vigorously and season it with some murri naqî*, vinegar, oil, pounded garlic, pepper, saffron, cumin, coriander, lavender, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, chopped lard and meat with all the gristle removed and pounded and divided, and enough egg to envelop the whole. Make small round flatbreads (qursas) out of them about the size of a palm or smaller, and fry them in a pan with a lot of oil until they are browned. Then make for them a sauce of vinegar, oil, and garlic, and leave some of it without any sauce: it is very good.

Recipe from an anonymous Andalusian cookbook


from the  13th century

serves 4-5

600 g [1,3 lb] ground meat of lamb, mutton or beef
2 tablespoon soy sauce **
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil or sesame oil
2 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 teaspoon black pepper
pinch of saffron
2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground lavendel
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/3 teaspoon cloves
3 eggs
olive oil for frying
1 dl [1/2 cup] vinegar
1 tablespoon seesame oil
1 minced garlic clove


Mix the sauce ingredients together and let the sauce stand for couple hours. Mix together the ground beef/lamb/mutton and rest of the ingredients well and put the meat dough in the fridge for at least half an hour. Shape small round (palm sizeed) patties from the meat and fry them in olive oil until done. (Decorate patties with lavendel) Serve hot with the sauce in a separate bowl.

Comments by Saara who runs ‘Let Hem Boyle * Murri nagî = means a certain type of andalusian murri. Murri on the other hand is a form of condiment, that has been used in arabic food but which use has significantly decrease after 14th century.

** If you don’t have time to do your own murri or you are not able to get ingredients for it or closer substitute sauces, then you can use soy sauce. I am not very fond of using substitutes but in this case I have bend my precepts and used soy sauce.

I wasn’t able to find lard that is suitable for arabic food from my grocery so I did leave it out.