llᐈ Arayes de Carne
Preparation time: 15 minutes
From my Moroccan food, I teach you how to cook, some dream sandwiches, which will excite everyone, they are the famous Arayes de Carne
Let's start by making the spicy potatoes, for this you must peel and chop the potatoes into cubes. Place the oil in a pan, once hot add the potatoes, stirring constantly. Add the garlic powder, the finely chopped jalapeño, the paprika, the chopped coriander and add the salt to taste. Remove from heat once potatoes are al dente.
While this process occurs, with the help of a kitchen container, begin to season the meat. Finely chop the tomatoes, chili, onions, parsley and pomegranate juice. As well as salt and cinnamon, stir everything very well in order to integrate all the ingredients. In the same pan where the fat from the potatoes was, place the meat, previously seasoned, leave it for about 10 minutes over medium heat so that it cooks perfectly, add the potatoes, which you had reserved, taking care to leave a little of them to be used in the end. Mix and leave it on the fire, about 5 to 10 minutes more, when there are about two minutes left to remove from the heat, introduce the finely chopped cilantro and cover. Remove from heat and let cool completely.
Start filling the pita bread, there are many ways to do it, there are those who fill the entire bread cake, others prefer to cut it into 4 or 2, to obtain individual sandwiches and thus skip the step of cutting it once baked. Whichever option you choose, the procedure is the same, with a kitchen brush, varnish the bread with the oil and mount on it, a layer of the meat stew, put the lid on it, which would be another pita bread and seal, again the two external faces of the bread with olive oil.
Grease a tray, place each Meat Arayes on it and take it to the oven at a temperature of 180° until you see that the meat looks compact.
Remove a moment from the oven and place the spicy potatoes that you had reserved, on them, accompanied by the mozzarella cheese, introduce it for 5 more minutes in the oven and serve it hot.
But do you know what is Arayes de Carne?
Etymologically the wordarayes”, has a very beautiful meaning, since it follows from the term “exciting”, which refers to the phrase "girlfriend".
Many historians have wanted to know why it is given that particular name, but their search has been in vain, since there is no record or any document that answers it.
However, some theories are presumed; offered by city dwellers, around its name, saying that its nickname is due to the appearance it generates at first glance when seeing this succulent dumpling, masterfully covered by white paper, as a protective shield, of its content, which resembles a suit bridal; wrapping that was used by the Syrians to sell them freely in markets and shops.
Another strong theory defends that it is called like that; for the perfect fusion of the two central ingredients, the meat stew and the pita bread, where the bread gives that aspect to the most beautiful wedding dress.
And another third theory, that it is such a colorful and inspiring sandwich, that they attribute it to a perfect simile between the couple of a bride dressed in the striking bread.
The meat arayes is like a kind of a pastry, empanadilla or what is commonly called in Middle Eastern countries as the delicious Arab sandwich with well-seasoned meat, which takes it to another level in terms of flavor.
Formerly, this pleasant dish used only lamb meat for its filling, but, over time, its main protein used in the stew has been replaced by others such as: Chicken, lean meat, pork, turkey or an integration of some of them to intensify their flavor or the incorporation of delicatessen products such as: Ham, pepperoni, sausages and cheeses, the latter to achieve a very exquisite, meat and cheese arayes.
As well as, wonderful versions have been created where the stew is made with vegetables, in order to satisfy the diets of people who refrain from eating meat.
What is the Origin of Arayes de Carne?
The meat arayes or toshka, is granted the honor of its creation to the Syrian gastronomy, which, given the movements of the Syrians for different reasons, both commercial and personal, spread to other regions, as is the case of Egypt, Jordan, Galilee to invade the European and American continent, through the already well-known and popular shawarma.
How is the Meat Arayes Prepared?
The Arayes de Carne, goes through three very specific and interesting processes: The first where you must prepare the spicy potatoes or Harras, the meat stew to finally wrap it in pita bread, which you can buy at any commercial establishment or by otherwise you can do it without problem.
A Trick: To avoid spills or the Arayes de Carne sandwiches from opening, you must select a pita bread that is neither very thin nor very thick, just as you must opt for the selected meat not to contain much fat, so that it does not plug the bread and consequently, it begins to drip everywhere.
If you have found this recipe for Arayes de Carne interesting and easy, be sure to check out our other sections and especially, this tasty preparation of Arab Pastelitos