Monday, 13 January 2014

Courgette and chick pea pie

I can't claim this as an Iranian creation, but I certainly had the tastes and fragrances of some Iranian dishes in mind.
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • small onion (finely diced)
  • tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • teaspoon ground coriander
  • plump courgettes
  • 125 grams basmati rice
  • 500 ml vegetable stock
  • 2 x 400 grams tins chickpeas (drained)
  • 100 grams melted butter
  • 200 grams filo pastry


  1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC/gas mark 6/400ºF and put in a baking sheet.
  2. Gently fry the cumin seeds and onion in the olive oil until the onion's soft. Add the turmeric and coriander. Dice the courgettes (unpeeled), add them to the onion mixture, and cook on a fairly high heat to prevent the courgettes becoming watery. When they are soft but still holding their shape, add the rice and stir well, letting the rice become well coated in the oil.
  3. Add the stock 100ml / ½ cup at a time, stirring while you do so. When all the liquid has been absorbed the rice should be cooked, so take it off the heat, stir in the chick peas and check the seasoning.
  4. Brush the insides of a 22cm / 9 inch springform tin with some of the melted butter. Line the bottom and sides of the tin with 3/4 of the filo, buttering each piece as you layer. Leave a little filo overlapping the sides, and keep 3-4 layers for the top. Carefully put in your slightly cooled filling, and then fold in the overlaps. Butter the last layers of filo and scrunch on top of the pie as a covering.
  5. Brush with a final coat of butter, and put in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until the filo is golden and the middle hot. Check this by inserting a slim, sharp-bladed knife (or cake-tester). If, when you remove it, it feels hot when you press it against your wrist, the pie's ready.

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