Baked Kibbeh (Kipe) is lighter than traditional fried ones, I find it more flavorful and moist, and easier to make for beginners.

– 2 cups bulgur – 1 pound minced beef – 1 large red onion, minced finely – 3 teaspoons salt, divided – ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper – ⅛ teaspoon cumin seeds – ¼ teaspoon cinnamon powder – 2 large tomato, skinned, seeded and diced – 6 tablespoon olive oil – ⅓ cup raisins – ⅓ cup pine nuts – 4 tablespoon minced parsley


Soak bulgur:

Pour the bulgur into a bowl and add enough water to cover, let it rest for an hour.

Season the meat:

In the meantime, mix the meat with onion, 1½ teaspoon of salt, and cayenne pepper. Mixed thoroughly using your hands. Divide the meat into halves, and set aside half of it. Add cumin seeds, cinnamon, and tomatoes to the half you will work with to make the filling.

Cook the meat:

Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the meat for the filling and quickly stir. Simmer, occasionally stirring, until the meat has cooked through and the liquids have evaporated. Taste and season with more salt if needed. Remove from the heat and mix in raisin, pine nuts and parsley. Cool to room temperature.

Make the crust:

Once the hour has passed, use a sieve to drain any water that wasn't absorbed, pressing down to remove any excess water. Pour the bulgur into a large bowl. Mix the uncooked meat you had reserved with the bulgur, doing a kneading motion with your hands. It should be mixed well enough that it retains its shaped when you press on it.

Assemble the casserole:

Pour 2 tablespoons of oil on the bottom of a 7 x 10½ inches [18 x 27 cm] baking pan. Spoon in half the bulgur and meat mixture and press down with your hands to obtain an even, compact layer. Cover with the cooked filling, pressing down to make an even layer. Cover with the remaining bulgur mixture and press down to make a compact, even layer. Score deeply with a knife in a diamond pattern about 2½ x 2½ inches [7 x 7 cm]. Pour remaining oil on top.

Cook the casserole:

Bake in oven preheated to 400 ºF [200 ºC], for 40 minutes or until top is golden brown.


Remove from the oven and cool for a few minutes before serving. To go with it, I suggest a light salad of diced cucumber and onion, bathed in thick unflavored yogurt, and seasoned with salt and pepper to taste.

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