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Nope, not Borax. Not Borat. Not Bokeh.




Borek. Pronounced Buh-rek (I think)


Honestly, I'd never heard of it before this weekend when Chef John posted a foodwishes.com video for Lamb Borek. It looked interesting and certainly worth a try. It's Turkish, or at least Middle Eastern in origin. The meat filling contains many of the same spices as the Moussaka I prepared last weeked. Cumin, coriander, cinnamon, paprika, allspice, etc. Chef John prepared his with lamb which the Mrs will not eat, so I made mine with a mix of ground beef and ground pork. 


Of course, I was planning on making this all out on one of the Kamados, but today's weather (thunderstorms and pouring rain) forced me to make part of this in the oven. The meat filling was prepared yesterday, the Bubba Keg got the call since I haven't used it in a while. The filling should be room temp or cool when placing in the Phyllo so prepping this yesterday was a good idea. It also gave the mixture a chance for the flavors to intensify a bit overnight in the fridge. 


All the ingredients outside, getting ready for the Keg. Onion, the spices, toasted pine nuts, garlic, EVOO, raisins, tomato paste and diced tomatoes (canned diced tomatoes were used in his recipe, I did my own thing as usual) -




Onions sauteing in the Lodge skillet-




After partially browning the pork and beef, toss in the spices and the garlic -




Followed by the tomatoes and paste, allowing it to simmer for some time until the mixture becomes a bit dry, but retains some moisture -




Fast forward to this afternoon, and an adventure in Phyllo. Two sheets spread out. then spread with an egg/Greek yogurt/water/melted butter wash which was a bit of a pain to brush on. Then two more sheets, each with its own layer of wash. Supposedly, the yogurt and melted butter help with pliability when rolling. I'll go with that, it wasn't as bad as I had imagined -




I put a line of filling about two inches from the end and successfully rolled it -




And this time remembered to add a line of Feta cheese -




Three rolls into the pan. Not as easy as Chef John made it look, but I managed. Top brushed with the egg wash -




Unfortunately, I didn't have any Sesame seeds to top it with, but it turned out fine. After 35-40 minutes in a 400 degree oven -




Plated with some Yogurt based Tzatziki sauce and some greens -








And that's it. Lunchman's take on Borek. It was quite good. The aromatic Middle Eastern spices in the meat mixture, wrapped in a crunchy Phyllo dough - excellent. Kinda fun to make, give this a try. 


There are all different variations on this recipe. I had thoughts of making another with just Spinach and Feta, but ran out of time. 


Thanks for checking out this post and tonites's dinner!



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18 minutes ago, SeaBrisket said:

I am going to make this. Looks fantastic. How apparent are the raisins in the final product? I don't mind when they disappear into a recipe for background flavor but I usually don't like them in the foreground.

I couldn't even tell they were there. Chef John's recipe actually calls for currants, which I wasn't about to try and find, he suggests raisins as a substitute. It calls for 2 Tbsps of raisins, which I didn't even measure out, but it was probably around that amount. 

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