Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Chicken & Beef Phyllo Rolls

Last week Allen at Eating Out Loud featured a recipe for Sigara Boregi with Minced Meat. As I read the recipe I realized that it sounded a lot like the phyllo rolls that I used to get at La Mediterranee in San Francisco. They were always a favorite of mine so I knew I had to try my hand at making them.
Phyllo Rolls
La Mediterranee served the rolls with a choice of three fillings, beef, chicken or cheese. My favorites were always the beef & chicken rolls both flavored with cinnamon. The beef is left savory while the chicken is sweetened with golden raisins & powdered sugar. I thought Allen's recipe for the beef sounded spot on so that left me to play with the chicken.
Phyllo Rolls
These were so good! I love the flavor of the cinnamon with the meat. Matt & I both really liked the chicken with the sweetness from the raisins & the powdered sugar. It was like being back in San Francisco & eating at La Mediterranee again. I don't usually cook with phyllo because I think its fussy but once I got the technique down (& ripped the first two rolls) these came together really easily.

Chicken Filling for Phyllo Rolls

2 T olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 clove garlic, minced
4 T pine nuts
12 oz cooked chicken, chopped
4 t ground cinnamon
1 t ground coriander
1 t dried oregano
4 T golden raisins
salt & pepper

Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook until beginning to soften. Add the garlic & pine nuts & cook another 2 - 3 minutes. Remove from the heat & allow to cool. Stir all remaining ingredients together with the onion mixture.

Enough filling for 10 rolls

Since both the beef & chicken filling start with the sautéed onions, garlic & pinenuts, I made that then split it in half. That way I was able to make a half batch of the chicken filling & a half batch of the beef filling.

How to make the Phyllo Rolls

Mix together in a small bowl
1 egg
2 T milk
1/4 c oil (Allen called for 1/2 c but I decided to try a little less & it worked just fine)

Lay a piece of phyllo dough out with the long side facing you. (Make sure to keep a damp cloth over the phyllo dough you aren't working with.)
Phyllo Rolls
Lightly brush one half of the dough with the egg mixture. Fold the dry side over the wet.
Phyllo Rolls
Brush egg mixture down the two long sides & the bottom short side. I tried brushing the whole square with it but then the rolls ripped when I tried to roll them. (If you do have a roll that rips like I did, just wrap another piece of phyllo around it that has been brushed with the egg mixture. I tried taking a broken roll apart & it just made a mess. Adding another sheet of phyllo just made for a little crustier finished roll.)
Put 1/4 cup of filling in the middle of the dough leaving about 2 inches on each side.
Phyllo Rolls
Fold the top long sides over the filling.
Phyllo Rolls
Fold the bottom up & begin rolling filling up like a cigarette.
Phyllo Rolls
Brush the top 2 inches with egg mixture & finish the roll.
Phyllo Rolls Phyllo Rolls
Place on a baking sheet with the seam side down. Brush the rolls on the tops & sides with the egg mixture. Sprinkle the beef rolls with sesame seeds.
Phyllo Rolls
Bake at 350 F for 20 - 25 minutes until the rolls are golden brown. Sprinkle the chicken rolls with powdered sugar (Don't skip the powdered sugar, it really makes these rolls) before serving.


Laura Paterson said...

These remind me of a Moroccan pastilla!

Stacey Snacks said...

I love stuffed cabbage w/ rice, meat and raisins.
Your phyllo bundles are beautiful.
Very daring for a Monday night!

Anonymous said...

These are really interesting. I hadn't really seen these before with more than just a cheese filling.

Deborah said...

Yum! ANd I love the step by step photos - makes is easier for people like me to figure it out!!

Jen said...

I have a roll of phyllo dough in the freezer that I need to use- and now I know exactly what to make with it!

Thistlemoon said...

This is genius! I never thought of using phyllo like this!

Peter M said...

Greeks throw cinnamon into savory dishes, so I know what this tastes like. You also handled the phyllo very well.

eatingclubvancouver_js said...

I've been eyeing Allen's Turkish delights too, so I'm happy to hear that this turned out well. I love the fact that they're baked. Hm, now I want something exotic tonight.

Jennifer said...

Those look really amazing, wow!

Anonymous said...

Yum! I love how you flavored the chicken filling with golden raisins and am intrigued by topping with powdered sugar. I'll have to keep this in mind to try next time.

Thanks for the shout out! I'm going to update my post to include a link to your creation :-)

grace said...

excellent how-to, and excellent (if unexpected) use of cinnamon! the next time i'm inspired to attack phyllo, i fully intend to make these! :)

Beth (jamandcream) said...

Im loving the sound of these, the pine nuts especially!

PG said...

Oh cool. I would never have thought of this. I'm always thinking about cheeses or spinach inside of phyllo.

Anonymous said...

I haven't eaten at La Mediteranee in 16 years but I will never forget those chicken rolls. I just came across a mention of the restaurant today and it got me thinking about those rolls and I did a search for "chicken raisin phyllo sugar" and found your lovely recipe. I definitely will be making this to bring back the nice memories of that wonderful restaurant.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this recipe! This is my favorite restaurant to eat at (the one in Berkeley) when I come home to visit. You just can't get this food in Texas where I live now. I've been looking high and low for a recipe to make something similar to their chicken cilecia! Can't wait to try it

L. Miller said...

I think the Cafe Med entree had garbanzo beans also -- I've made a recipe similar to this one with the beans and it came out great. Thanks for the recipe! (Indy born, 13 yrs in Bay Area, 18 yrs now in Lexington, KY -- crave ethnic food!)

Matty Stone said...

I've been to La Mediterranee around 100 times. I'm not kidding. I lived in the Lower Haight for 15 years and was aregular at L.M.

I'm doing this as an app for a Christmas get together and doing a trial run right now. As my wife and I are vegetarians I've tweaked a few things on the filling while trying to keep true to the recipe. The rolls are in the oven and looking good.
Thanks for this!

Anonymous said...

Thanks SO much for this recipe!! I graduated from Cal last year and have a great love for the chicken cilicia from le med =) I've been craving this since moving back to LA!

DD said...

Thank you, Kat!

I was looking for a way to use up a little leftover phyllo... I just made up a half batch, and they were delicious.

And yes, the powdered sugar is a must--they taste just like La Med!

Erik McKee said...

THANK YOU for posting this! Like so many other folks, I'm a Cal grad and the flavor of these at Lad Mediterranee has never left me. It's probably my favorite dish at my favorite restaurant in the bay area. I've searched for years for something similar, but never found anything, so I'm DYING to try out your recipe!

As L. Miller said earlier, the La Med recipe had chick peas/garbanzo beans also, but those should be easy enough to add.

Again, THANK YOU!!!

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