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Egyptian recipes: Stuffed filo pastry and Meat in pita bread (Howawshy)

Updated on May 15, 2011

Stuffed Fillo pastry

Fillo pastry stuffed with beef meat
Fillo pastry stuffed with beef meat

Filo pastry is a magic dough!

This magic filo can be served as a main dish, side dish or as a desert, depends on how you fill it. My kids love hot filo stuffed with cheese "I love it too". You can store some filo dough in your freezer so you can use it in emergency cases when you're out of ideas and need some new taste for dinner. You can stuff it with meat too as a main dish and cook some soup and salad beside it. You can use pastry cream stuffing or just hazelnut and sugar. It can be served with or without syrup.

Filo Pastry

Raw filo pastry can be used for sweet and salty recipes
Raw filo pastry can be used for sweet and salty recipes

Filo pastry stuffed with meat

You need

  • 1 pound raw filo pastry
  • Molten butter
  • 1 pound minced beef meat
  • 1 diced onion
  • Spices up to taste (black pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon,...) and salt up to taste
  • 1 cup milk or meat broth


In a cooking pan put onion, spices, salt and meat. Cook on medium fire till meat becomes dark brown stirring occasionally. Brush a baking tray with molten butter. Spread a layer of filo and brush with butter. Repeat till you spread 4-5 layers. Put half the amount of cooked meat then cover with a filo sheet then brush with butter. put another filo sheet and brush again. Put the rest of meat and cover with a filo sheet. Brush each filo sheet. Put the rest of filo on top. brush the top layer and cook in 50F oven for 20 minutes. Bring the tray out of the oven and pour milk or meat broth and put it back in the oven for more 10 minutes.

Sweet filo pastry

How to roll filo pastry?

In a pan heat 1 cup of sugar and 1 cup of water and stir to dissolve. When it boils add few drops of lemon juice and stir. Leave it to cool down.

If the filo sheets are frozen you can put the closed pack in hot water for 15 minutes "make sure it's firmly closed". Open the pack and wrap the filo in a clean towel to keep them soft. In a small bowl mix some crushed hazelnut and 2 tbsp sugar. You can add flavourings like vanilla sugar, coconut or cinnamon. Spread a filo sheet on a clean table and brush it with molten butter. Put some filling in the middle and wrap the sheet to have a finger size bite. Brush a cooking tray with butter and put the filo pieces in the tray and bake in 350F oven for 25-30 minutes.

Take the tray out of the oven and pour the cold syrup immediately.


Howawshy is eaten with pickled vegitables
Howawshy is eaten with pickled vegitables | Source

Do you know what is howawshy?

Howawshy is a very unique way to eat meat in Egypt. People at different levels know,eat and like howawshy. You can never eat it the same taste out of Egypt, I don’t know why! It might be the bread or spices I really don’t know. I just enjoy it.When I was out of Egypt, I used to cook howawshy in holidays when we plan for a BBQ. It’s really fun when it’s included in the BBQ list of foods.


•1 pound lamb or beef minced meat “a bit fatty meat is fine too”

•1 chilly green pepper chopped finely

•1 sweet green pepper chopped finely too

•½ pound Grit •1 minced onion

•1 small diced tomato

•Spices (nutmeg, cinnamon and black pepper) and salt

•Pita bread



•In a bowl put minced meat and add onion, pepper, ½tspsalt and spices and mix together by hand.

•Mix grit with tomato and leave aside for 15 minutes

•Mix Everything together in the bowl and fridge for 2 hours.

•Brush pita bread in and out with oil.

•Spread a layer of meat in pita bread.

•Wrap bread in Aluminium foil.


•You can cook howawshy in a 400F preheated oven for 30-40 minutes “turn it after 15 minutes”.

•When you plan for a BBQ prepare every thing but spread meat in bread exactly before you put on coal. You don’t need to wrap it with foil in this case.


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    • profile image

      Catherine 3 years ago

      What's grit where can I find it in Australia

    • thastar profile image

      thastar 6 years ago

      Hi i am back from my holiday ddid i mist anything please fill me in. i love your filo pastry recipe l will try it out.we don't get filo pastry in my country can i use something else.

    • kafsoa profile image

      kafsoa 6 years ago

      Thank you PurvisBobbi44; I'll never be disappointed as long as I meet nice people like you:)

    • PurvisBobbi44 profile image

      PurvisBobbi44 6 years ago from Florida


      Don't be disappointed about numbers, your Hub was lovely, and I love to cook, and I can tell you I have used Filo many times---but your recipe looks great, and when I slow down again I will try it.

      You have a Wonderful Week.


    • kafsoa profile image

      kafsoa 6 years ago

      You're most welcomed Schatzie, I wish if you have a look at the rest of Egyptian recipes, you might find any of them nice.

    • Schatzie Speaks profile image

      Schatzie Speaks 6 years ago from US

      Everything sounds delicious. Makes me want to have a second dinner! I love making new foods, and am excited to try howawshy, thanks for including the recipe. :)

    • kafsoa profile image

      kafsoa 6 years ago

      Welcome to filo lovers club Tony:)

    • tonymead60 profile image

      Tony Mead 6 years ago from Yorkshire

      hi Kafsoa

      I fancy this recipe, I'm a filo fan...



    • kafsoa profile image

      kafsoa 6 years ago

      Oh thank you guys, you brought me back to life. I was disappointed yesterday when I found the rate of this hub 46! I couldn't believe that it's that bad.

      Thanks Nikki, yes cinnamon gives minced meat a special taste. You can add ground cinammon or stickes.

      That Mary Ann, It's sweet to hear baklave I really like this word. We call it Baklawa here in Egypt :)

      Thanks randomcreative, you always give me nice feed back, this is really good to know that people like what you did:)

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 6 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      I love filo pastry. Both of these recipes sound delicious!

    • profile image

      THAT Mary Ann 6 years ago

      I make baklava but have never made this meat filled pastry. Looks wonderful and I shall try it soon. Thanks for the useful tip!

    • Nikki49 profile image

      Nikki49 6 years ago from Woodruff,S.C.

      Interesting usage of spices in the meat mixture.

      I'm one that would never think to use cinnamon!

      Thanks for the tip Kafsoa!!