I just love this crisp Moroccan pastilla recipe: crunchy baked pastry triangles filled with juicy chicken and Eastern spices… Epic!
Next on my list of dishes to try out: a crunchy Moroccan chicken pastilla!
Not surprisingly pastillas were my daily snack or lunch while I was visiting Marrakech last year. I’m fond of it! So I went to work and tried to replicate this treat. And it worked! The chicken filling is flavorful, the brick pastry is crunchy.
Moroccan Pastilla Recipe with Chicken
You can also make this Moroccan pastilla recipe with another type of meat such as lamb, quail, beef and even confit duck. Or just keep it veggie! It’s up to you.
I also sprinkle the pastilla with icing sugar and ground cinnamon right in the end. This is the traditional Moroccan way of serving pastillas.
Do you love Moroccan recipes?
Then also check out my Moroccan harira soup!
For The Chicken Filling
- 9 oz fresh chicken breast (250 g), diced
- a handful almonds blended finely
- ½ small onion chopped
- 1 small garlic clove chopped
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 tsp curcuma powder
- 1 tsp fresh ginger grated
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tbsp caster sugar
- a handful fresh cilantro chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 small egg
- 2 tbsp raisins chopped
- olive oil
Add the onion, garlic, some olive oil, ground cinnamon, coriander, cumin seeds, bay leaves and curcuma to a large non-stick pan.
Place the pan over medium-high heat and gently fry the ingredients for 5 minutes until softened a little. Then add the diced chicken breast to the pan together with a little splash of water. Season with some pepper and salt.
Stir and cover the pan. Cook the chicken for about 15 or until it's cooked through. Stir regularly. Add extra water if necessary. Then take the chicken off the heat and let it cool down fully.
Then carefully shred the chicken up with your hands or using 2 forks. Add the grated ginger and finely blended or chopped almonds (you can toast them first if you like).
Stir in the chopped cilantro and raisins.
- Place the chicken back over medium heat. Once hot, break the egg and add it to the chicken.
Stir quickly and let the egg set in the chicken mixture. Check the seasoning and add extra pepper, salt or sugar to taste. Also remove the bay leaves.
Assembling the Moroccan Pastilla Recipe
- 4 large sheets brick pastry
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter melted
Cut the brick pastry in half. Place one half on a chopping board or clean surface and add a dollop of the cooked chicken. Brush lightly with the melted butter.
Then fold the bottom part over.
Fold the right side and cover the chicken.
Brush the remaining dough with extra melted butter. Fold the chicken parcel in a triangular shape now.
And keep on folding it like this.
In the end all that is left is a tiny dough flap.
Tuck this in nicely and then turn the parcel over.
Assemble the rest of the pastillas. Then place them on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Brush the tops with more melted butter.
Then bake the pastillas in a preheated oven at 450°F (230°C) for 30 minutes. Halfway through baking time, flip the parcels over to brown them on both sides. Once baked and golden, remove the pastillas from the oven, drain them a little on kitchen paper and then place them on a large serving dish. Sprinkle with icing sugar and ground cinnamon. Serve hot.
Moroccan Carrot Salad
What’s a great side dish to serve with these crunchy crisp chicken pastillas?
A recipe straight that also comes straight from the streets of Marrakech then: a delicious Moroccan carrot salad! The cumin in this recipe is very important because it gives this salad that typical Moroccan touch.
The coriander seeds are optional because I’m aware that these tend to be harder to find. I bought a bag of them while on holiday in Marrakech. I’ve made this carrot salad with fennel seeds instead of coriander seeds before, which was also amazing.
Keep the carrots crunchy! This is not a carrot mash… Serve the salad preferably lukewarm or at room temperature.
Do you love Moroccan food?
Then also check out another carrot delight: my silky smooth carrot and orange soup! You will love that one as well.
A recipe straight from Marrakech then: a Moroccan carrot salad! The cumin and cilantro give this salad that typical Moroccan touch.
- 7 medium fresh carrots
- 1 tsp cumin seeds or powder
- 1 tsp coriander seeds (optional)
- 3 garlic cloves finely chopped
- 1 tbsp fresh cilantro chopped
- 1 tsp white wine vinegar
- olive oil
Peel the carrots and chop them into ⅓ inch (8 mm) slices. Then transfer them to a large saucepan. Add water until the carrots are submerged. Season with a pinch of salt.
Place the pan over medium heat until boiling. Cook the carrots for about 5 minutes until they are somewhere between tender and still crunchy. Immediately strain the carrots and rinse them under cold running tap water to stop the cooking process.
Let the carrots drain. In the meantime pour a little olive oil in a non-stick pan and then add the star anise, chopped garlic, cumin seeds (or ground cumin) and coriander seeds (optional).
Then place the pan over medium heat. Stir fry the ingredients for 3 minutes until the garlic is soft. Take the pan off the heat and add the cooked carrot.
Stir well. Add the vinegar, chopped cilantro and pepper and salt to taste.
Stir the carrot salad well. Let it cool at room temperature for 10 minutes. Then serve the carrot salad lukewarm or at room temperature.