Savoury Moroccan Pie

Recipe by Sackville
READY IN: 1hr 45mins




  • About 2 hours before starting, remove the phyllo from the freezer but keep tightly covered.
  • Salt and pepper the chicken.
  • Brown in its own juices in a heavy skillet.
  • Remove to a plate.
  • Add the onions and parsley to the skillet.
  • Sauté in 2 tbsp vegetable oil or margarine until golden, stirring frequently.
  • Return chicken to the skillet and add coriander, turmeric, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ginger, saffron in water, allspice, and 2 cups water or more if you think it is needed.
  • Bring to a slow boil.
  • Cover and simmer about 45 minutes, or until the chicken is done.
  • Meanwhile, sauté the almonds in 4 tbsp oil until brown.
  • Remove to dry on paper towels.
  • When cool and dry, chop coarsely and combine with the sugar and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon.
  • If you are going to cook the pastilla immediately, preheat oven to 375°F.
  • When chicken is done, remove from pot and let cool.
  • If you wish, skim off some of the fat from the sauce and leave sauce over small flame to reduce the stock to about 1 1/2 cups.
  • When the chicken is cool, debone it and, using your fingers, break it into small chunks, about 1/4 inch each.
  • Place on a plate.
  • When the sauce is reduced, slowly add the beaten eggs and stir for a minute or two until eggs become custard like.
  • Do not let the sauce become too dry.
  • You can assemble the pie several ways, using either a round quiche pan or a 9x13-inch dish.
  • Brush oil on the bottom of either pan you use.
  • For the rectangular method, place 1 phyllo sheet in the pan and brush with oil.
  • Repeat with 5 more sheets.
  • Over them, spread 1/2 the nuts, 1/2 the egg mixture, all the chicken the remaining egg mixture, and the remaining nuts.
  • Cover with 5-6 sheets of phyllo, again brushing with oil each time.
  • Fold over any loose ends and brush the tops with oil.
  • Take a last leaf of phyllo, fold under so that it neatly covers the pie, and brush with oil. (You can also layer the phyllo between the different foods).
  • For the circular method, place one sheet of phyllo in the middle of the quiche pan.
  • Brush with oil and then repeat with 5 more phyllo sheets, moving the pan a bit so that the phyllo fans the entire pan.
  • Fold 2 pieces of phyllo and place in center.
  • In a circle 9 inches in diameter, sprinkle 1/2 the almonds on top, then 1/2 the egg mixture, all the chicken, the remaining egg mixture and finally the remaining almonds.
  • Cover with the extended edges of the 6 phyllo sheets, brushing the edges first.
  • Seal down, then place 2 more sheets of phyllo on top.
  • Fold over and seal underneath, so that an enclosed circular crust is formed.
  • Bake the pie 30-45 minutes, until top is evenly browned.
  • When ready to serve, sprinkle the top with confectioners' sugar and cinnamon, almonds, or both, in crisscross fashion over the entire pastilla.
  • If preparing in advance, make up the pie, then layer with aluminum foil and freeze.
  • Remove a few hours before cooking and cook as normal.
  • You may need to bake it a bit longer.