Egyptian Hawawshi…my favorite was from a butcher shop


Egyptian Hawawshi is a very famous traditional Egyptian street food. However, it is prepared in Egyptian homes as well. The quality of the meat for the ones that are made at home is much better, but there is still something special about the ones made outside. Hawawshi is basically some type of dough or Egyptian bread “Baladi” stuffed with ground beef, spices, onions, bell peppers, and more. It is super tasty specially with the grease from the meat on the bread. My memory of a good Hawawshi in Egypt is the one that is usually wrapped in newspapers and leaves a good shiny grease on my fingers. My best experience of Hawawshi was in an area called “Imbaba” in Egypt where I ate my favorite Hawawshi from a butcher shop! It was an actual butcher shop that was selling meat and cooked Hawawshi. Strange combination but it actually makes sense. This recipe below captures the good flavors but with some tweaks if the Egyptian bread is not available.
6 baladi bread or pita bread
2 pounds ground beef (I use the more fatty one, 80%-20%)
1 tablespoon all spices
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 tablespoon pepper
1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1 bell pepper
3 onions
1  tomato
1 jalapeno (for spicy)
3 tablespoons corn oil or canola oil

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
In a food processor, mix onions, tomato, bell pepper and jalapeno

In a large bowl, mix the beef with the food processor mix above.

Add all spices (salt, pepper, paprika, cumin, paprika, cinnamon and all spices)
Mix everything well together.

Ground beef with spices, onions, minced garlic and minced bell pepper

Open the baladi or pita bread carefully and stuff it with about a 1/4 inch of the beef inside it.

Add a little bit of paprika (1/8 teaspoon) on the oil.
Use your brush and brush both sides of the bread with little bit of oil.

Cover well the break and tray with foil

Place the tray in  oven. Bake in the oven for about 25 minutes.

Remove the foil until golden browned and crisp (5 to 7 mins)


P.S. Some people use instead of the bread an actual dough, this is very known in Alexandria. So, sometimes I use the pizza dough and make it thin and flat then I put the same beef mix and add another layer on the top then bake it. It is so delicious too but extra work 😉


2 Comments Add yours

  1. mariam says:

    Sounds delicious! Please post a recipe for the traditional dough for it. Thanks!


  2. Maria says:

    I love this recipe but have a hard time figuring out how much onion to use. The onions at the market vary so much in size! What would be the amount of minced onion? Measurement could be in ounces, grams, or even in American measuring cups. Thanks 🙂


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