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Mina del Pesach (Passover matzo pie)

(daniel layla)
April 8, 2009
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Serves 8

Matzo acts as the "crust" of this savory pie, which combines ground beef or lamb and potatoes. Cook and mash the potatoes before you begin.

CRUST

1/2 cup olive oil (for brushing)
8 to 10 boards plain matzo
1. Oil a deep 9-inch pie pan.

2. Fill a large shallow bowl with cold water. Dip the matzos in the water for 10 to 20 seconds, then transfer them to a clean kitchen towel, making one layer without overlapping them. Cover them with another damp towel and set aside for 15 minutes or until the filling is ready. The matzos should be soft and flexible.

FILLING

1/2 cup pine nuts
4 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped finely
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 1/2 pounds ground beef or lamb
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 eggs
2 tablespoons matzo meal
2 medium potatoes, cooked and mashed
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cup chicken stock
1. Set the oven at 350 degrees.

2. In a small dry skillet, lightly toast the pine nuts over medium heat, shaking the pan constantly, for 5 minutes or until lightly brown; set aside.

3. In a large skillet, heat the vegetable oil. When it is hot, add the onion and cook, stirring often, for 10 minutes or until lightly golden. Add garlic, beef or lamb, salt, and pepper. Continue cooking, stirring often, for 5 minutes or until the meat is browned. Stir in the cinnamon. Set aside to slightly cool.

4. Stir in the eggs, matzo meal, mashed potatoes, pine nuts, and parsley.

5. Brush each matzo with olive oil. Take one and place it in the dish oiled side down. Brush the top with oil. Do the same with other matzos until the bottom is covered, letting the matzos drape over the edges of the pan. Spread half of the meat mixture in the dish. Cover with 1 matzo, oiled side down; brush with oil. Spread the remaining meat mixture on top. Fold the draped matzos over the filling to cover the pie. Place 1 more matzo on top; brush with olive oil.

6. Set the pie on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake the pie for 30 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven, pour the chicken stock over the pie and return it to the oven for 5 minutes more or until the top crust is crisp. Adapted from "The Book of New Israeli Food"

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