Emirati style borekas recipe

Updated: Apr 5, 2021

I love borekas - they are fun to cook as you can do just about anything with the fillings. One really has the opportunity to be creative with them. They are also a culturally diverse food. As a friend recently said to me "everyone has borekas" - well, at least in some form or the other!

I have taken my boreka recipe and added a a traditional, fragrant Emirati pumpkin dessert as a filling. According to Emirati Chef Mussabah Al Kaabi, Asseda Bobar is a 'very old dessert dish'. I thought it would make a nice filling for borekas and I have used Chef Mussabah's recipe:


300g flour

600g pumpkin

20g rose water

5g cardamom

3g saffron

250g sugar (I use less as I don't like overly sweet dishes)

30g ghee (can replace with butter)


Roast the flour in the oven until it turns golden.

Peel and boil the pumpkin until soft. Strain and place back in the pot.

Add the flour and rest of the ingredients to the pumpkin.

Mix all the ingredients in the pot together slowly and cook on low heat for 15 minutes.

Serve in bowls garnished with currants.

I decided to use this as a filling for triangle shaped borekas and it turned out brilliantly! My preference for the pastry is to use phyllo, as I like the thin, crispy casing it creates. It's a little bit more difficult to work with, but worth the effort.

I cut the phyllo sheets into 4 equal strips. I coat each strip with butter, drop some filling and then fold them into triangles. Lastly, I brush them with more butter and sprinkle sesame seeds on top before baking at 200 degrees centigrade.

They were also made as phyllo cigars. Take a sheet of phyllo pastry and about 1cm away from the long edge, running down the side of the edge, place some of the filling. Roll into a long cigar and then cut into 10cm pieces.

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