Bisteeya or Moroccan Chicken Pie

"This will break your mouth as they say down south. Its just fantastic if you like exotic flavors and good old fashioned chicken pot pie!"
photo by Sweet Diva MJ photo by Sweet Diva MJ
photo by Sweet Diva MJ
photo by Sweet Diva MJ photo by Sweet Diva MJ
Ready In:




  • In a large skillet put 2 tablespoons butter, the chicken pieces, onions, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon pepper,2 teaspoons cinnamon, the ginger, cumin, cayenne, saffron, turmeric and chicken stock.
  • simmer gently, covered, until the chicken is cooked, 45 minutes.
  • remove the chicken from the sauce and let it cool.
  • remove all the bones and tear the chicken into 1 inch pieces.
  • bring the liquid to a simmer and add the eggs stirring gently until the eggs are cooked and most of the liquid is evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes.
  • add the chicken, cilantro, parsley, salt and pepper and mix well.
  • Preheat oven to 375°F.
  • Toast the almonds in the oven until they are very lightly golden and hot to the touch, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  • Coarsely chop them in a blender or food processor and mix with 3 tablespoons sugar and 3/4 teaspoons cinnamon.
  • set aside and reserve the rest of the cinnamon sugar for a garnish.
  • Melt the remaining 12 tablespoons butter. brush a 12 inch pie pan with the butter.
  • place one sheet of phyllo dough on the bottom of the pie plate so that it completely covers the bottom of the plate and extends over one side by several inches.
  • brush the whole sheet of phyllo lightly and continue with 7 more sheets moving in a pinwheel effect, brushing butter on each sheet.
  • spread the chicken mixture on the phyllo and sprinkle with the almond mixture.
  • Fold the overhanging phyllo up over the chicken and almonds and brush with butter.
  • then continue adding 7 more sheets of phyllo to the pie as your did before.
  • tuck all the overhanging edges under the pie and brush remaining butter over top of the pie.
  • place in 375F oven and bake until golden brown and flaky, about 20 minutes.
  • sprinkle the garnishing cinnamon and sugar over top.

Questions & Replies

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  1. dawna1
    I decided to go with a Moroccan theme at a recent dinner for friends. I loved B'steya when we've been to Moroccan restaurants so I thought I would try this. Remembering how flaky the philo pastry crust can be though, I decided to do something a little different. Instead of making the pie as described, I assembled it like Spanikopita--making the pastries into individual triangles. It turned out to be a real hit!
  2. Ariana9898
    This was so much fun to make! I used this recipe for a project at my school, and everyone thought it was very delicious! Some people didn't try it, though, because it does look pretty foreign. I think that the recipe underestimated the time it takes to make this. Even though I made 2 pies, it still took about 3 or 4 hours. I'm not surprised that it takes a long time because bisteeya is often served at muslim weddings and at eid al-fitr, which are both very special occasions. The best part of making it was doing the phyllo dough because it's almost like putting layers of paper on the pie! <br/>I really liked the unique, exotic flavors of bisteeya. It is slightly slightly spicy, and it's also sweet and crunchy from the almonds. Warning, though, it is very buttery and messy to serve.
  3. Recipe Reader
    This is very good, and something a little different. It was a lot of work to put together, but worth it! Thanks for posting this unique recipe.
  4. Sweet Diva MJ
    Thank you for giving us a taste of Morocco! We love trying different things and this was very enjoyable - 2 out of 3 kids LOVED it & asked for seconds! (DH did too.) We only had two pieces of pie left! I know most people wouldn't expect kids to eat this, but my kids are adventurous... After dinner, we found Morocco on the world map and then looked it up on Microsoft Student encyclopedia to see what the culture was like, etc...(I homeschool - everything is a learning experience!) I had planned to make this exactly as the recipe instructed, but then life happened....I ended up having to leave the house and didn't get home in time to make this for dinner yesterday, so here I had thawed chicken and a busy weekend ahead of me. Knowing it would be several days before I would have time to make this in one sitting, I did the following....I omitted the butter from step 1, skinned the chicken. I then combined the listed spices (up to the chicken stock), coated the chicken with the spices and placed them in my crockpot. I covered the chicken with finely chopped onion and poured the 1/4 cup stock over. I set the crock pot on low and let it cook all night (8 hrs.) while I slept. Took chicken/onions out of crockpot and allowed to cool while I made breakfast, then cut up the chicken and onions once cool. I poured the juices from the crockpot through a fine-mesh strainer to get some unappetizing remnants out of it, then proceeded to make the eggs with the liquid as stated in the recipe. I toasted the almonds in th microwave, combined with the sugar & cinnamon & set aside. I then placed the mixture in the fridge as we had to leave for the afternoon. When I got home, I proceeded with the recipe as stated, but instead of brushing the layers with butter, I sprayed each layer with I Can't Believe It's Not Butter (don't cringe!) Spray. It turned out delicious! It will be added to my Zaar favorites for the next time we need a little taste of Morroco!!
  5. MarraMamba
    Made and INHALED. this is delicious and to make it a little lower fat i used "butter free" phyllo by spraying each sheet with butter flavored cooking spray rather than butter. Scaled it down to make it as an individual little one :)


<p>Hello, <br />I am a southerner, born and raised here in the deep south. I have many interest and you could probably call me a jack of all trades, master of none! Currently I am a school bus driver, before that I was a Costumer and manager/ buyer for a Costume shop, before that I spent a few years as a graphic designer. For the past 15 years in my free time, I have studied Medieval history and hope to one day get a degree in it. <br />I have 4 wonderful kitty's who allow me to live with them If I bribe them with food. Hehe, other wise they mutiny! I love snow skiing, mountain climbing,and archeology digs,most of which are not conducive to the south, so Its a good thing I love to travel! <br />Of course I love to cook and horde recipes like they are gold, I am also a member of the Society for Creative Anachronism's (SCA), where I am a baroness, painter of manuscripts, and leader of the local group. Thus my name. <br />One of the things I like doing in the SCA is cooking period food for 300 or so of my friends, after researching recipes and redacting them to suit modern taste. I have always been interested in different cultures and food is a wonderful way to experience a taste of someone else's world. Thats when I found Recipe ZAAR, and I have been enjoying new friendships and some great food here! <br /><img src= border=0 alt=Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket /> <img src= border=0 alt=Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket /></p>
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