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Baked golden brown filo Doug wrapped ouzi on baking tray

Oozi - Filo wrapped rice

A filo wrapped bundle of Middle Eastern spiced rice with minced meat
4.8 from 5 votes
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Middle Eastern
Keyword: rice, middle eastern
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 360kcal
Author: Farah Abumaizar


For the rice:

  • 2 tsp olive oil small 
  • 2 small red onions, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 500 g ground beef or lamb 1 lb
  • 1 tsp all spice or seven spices
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/2-1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper to taste
  • 2 cups basmati rice
  • 3.5 cups water
  • 200 g frozen peas
  • pinch salt, pepper, and seven spices/all spices
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

For assembling:

  • 1 package fillo pastry sheets , thawed
  • 2 tbsp melted butter


Make the rice:

  • In a large skillet over medium high heat, add the olive oil. Once hot, add the diced onions and cook for 3-4 minutes until softened, stirring continuously.
  • Add the crushed garlic, and cook for a further minute or so, then add the minced lamb.
  • Cook for a minute, breaking apart any clumps of meat with a wooden spoon, then add all the spices (seven spice or all spice, cinnamon, salt and black pepper). Continue cooking, a good 6-8 minutes until lamb is all cooked through and brown with no pink bits remaining. Keep stirring and breaking apart clumps of meat through out- you can even use a potato masher to break the meat apart a little.
  • If desired, drain any extra fat. Taste the mince and adjust for seasoning.
  • Soak the basmati rice for 15-20 minutes, then drain and rinse with water until water runs clear.
  • To a large saucepan, add the minced meat (I don't always use all of it, I usually use around 300 grams or so), plus the drained basmati rice, the frozen peas, and 3.5 cups of water. Sprinkle with a big pinch of salt, pepper, and some additional all spice or seven spices. Stir to combine.
  • Bring the contents of the saucepan to a boil, uncovered, then cover with a tight fitting lid, reduce heat to a low simmer, and simmer for 20 minutes or until water is all absorbed. Remove pan from heat but let it sit covered for an additional 10 minutes, then uncover and fluff with a fork. Mix in the toasted pine nuts, and let rice cool before wrapping it withfilo dough.

To assemble:

  • Heat oven to 180 C (350F)
  • Choose a small dessert bowl that'll be the approximate size of each individual wrapped rice parcel. Brush the inside of the bowl with melted butter to prevent the pastry from sticking.
  • Layer four sheets of fillo pastry stacked on top of each other into the bowl, and trim the ends so that theres enough filo dough to cover the inside of the bowl and be able to wrap up your mound of rice. Depending on how big you bowl is, you'll probably need a heaped 1/3 -1/2 cup of rice per bowl. Bring the ends of the filo dough up and over the rice then flip it so the mound side is up and place on a parchment lined baking tray.
  • Once all your mounds have been assembled (you've finished all the rice) brush the mounds with melted butter and bake at 180 C (350F) for 30 minutes or until golden brown


Full recipe post for Lebanese Rice filling can be found here:
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Calories: 360kcal