Middle Eastern Stuffed Potatoes

It’s Ramadan and I’ve been beating the long days and boredom (especially on the weekends) by cooking. The first weekend, I may or may not have gone on a complete cooking spree and I just haven’t been able to stop myself since then. If you’re interested in seeing what I’m up to, follow along on my Instagram story. I’m always sharing photos and videos of my goodies. Currently, I’m waiting my Pink Pickled Turnips to set. Only about a week and a half or so left before they’re ready to be devoured.

I made Middle Eastern Stuffed Potatoes not once, but twice over the last week. The first time for a weeknight iftar at a friend’s, and the second to actually take photos (and feed my family).  Here’s the deal with coring vegetables in general; first, you have to use a thin corer. Generally, you can find them at the Arabic store. Also, unless you’re a professional vegetable corer, it’s almost impossible to figure out if you’ve dug your holes too deep (that is, unless you poke through the other end of the vegetable). It’s part practice, part luck. After coring two bags of potatoes, I can proudly call myself a self-proclaimed professional potato corer.

Middle Eastern Stuffed Potatoes

I can offer some advice when it comes to making stuffed potatoes:

  1. The smaller potatoes are, surprisingly, easier to core than the large ones. I found that with the smaller ones, you have a better sense for how much to hollow out before hitting any of the sides. With the larger potatoes, it’s a little harder to figure out.
  2. When you fry the potatoes, make sure the oil is hot before you put the potatoes in. This way, it’ll only take a couple minutes on each side to get slightly browned.
  3. Cover the potatoes when they bake in the oven. This way, they don’t dry out.

Middle Eastern Stuffed Potatoes

Middle Eastern Stuffed Potatoes

Middle Eastern Stuffed Potatoes [Batata Mahshiyeh]

Ingredients

    For the stuffing
  • 1 lb gound beef
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Seven Spice
  • Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon Cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons Pine Nuts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • For the Potatoes
  • 1 bag Yukon Gold or Butter Potatoes (about 12-15 potatoes)
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 3 cups tomato sauce + 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon Seven Spice
  • 1 cube Maggi

Instructions

    For the Stuffing
  1. In a large skillet heat 1 tablespoon olive oil
  2. Sauté the onions until translucent
  3. Add the ground beef and cook until browned
  4. Season with seven spice, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg
  5. Remove from heat
  6. Heat one tablespoon oil and cook the pine nuts until lightly browned. Keep an eye on them! Pine nuts fry quickly. Remove from oil onto a blotter.
  7. For the Potatoes
  8. Peel and wash the potatoes
  9. Using a thin vegetable corer, carve out the middle portion of the potatoes making sure not to puncture the potatoes
  10. Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat
  11. Once hot, place the potatoes in the oil and fry on all sides until a light golden brown
  12. Remove and place on paper towels to absorb additional oil
  13. Once the potatoes have cooled, stuff the potatoes with the ground beef mixture leaving 1/8 inch space from the top
  14. Place in a single layer in a baking tray
  15. Use 1 tablespoon olive oil to saute garlic
  16. Add tomato sauce and water
  17. Bring to a boil, add in seven spice and Maggi, then turn heat off
  18. Pour the tomato sauce over the potatoes
  19. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 50 minutes on 375 F
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