This Lebanese Hashweh recipe (or Hushwee) is a basic meat stuffing recipe used in many other Lebanese dishes. Hashweh is made up of spiced beef (or lamb), onions, and toasted pine nuts.Jump to Recipe
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Every cultural cuisine has its standard dishes and certain recipes that you have to know in order to be able to successfully cook that cuisine. I would consider this hushwee recipe to be just that. Hashweh is used in many MANY Lebanese dishes in some way shape or form.
So many of the dishes I grew up with use hashweh, although the recipe may slightly be different depending on the dish with which it's being used. In it's traditional form, hashweh is used as a stuffing for kibbeh and either baked or fried after it is stuffed. It is also very common to use hashweh with vermicelli rice (hashweh rice) or even in Lebanese chicken and rice.
Hashweh beef is also used to stuff Lebanese Meat Pies (one of my favorite recipes ever), although I also add celery to the hashweh for this, which is something my family does. If you were wondering, Lebanese recipes to vary from family to family, but the integrity of the recipes stands strong.
If you want to find out more about Lebanese food check out my article >> The Ultimate Guide to Lebanese Food
What is Hashweh (hushwee)?
Hashweh is a very basic Lebanese recipe that is part of the building blocks of many Lebanese dishes. Lebanese hashweh is a ground beef stuffing that is browned with onions, toasted pine nuts and warm Middle Eastern spices.
Some families use ground lamb instead of ground beef, however when my family came over to the United States, lamb was expensive and harder to find. So basically all of the recipes that called for lamb, my family began substituting with beef instead.
As I have stated there are minor variations to this recipe between families and also there can be variations depending on which dish it is being used in. For the purpose of this post, I am sharing the most basic recipe for hashweh beef.
Is Lebanese Hushwee beef or lamb?
This is totally up to you, whether you want to make it with minced lamb or with ground beef. Many Middle Eastern ground beef recipes can be made in to recipes with lamb or vice versa. Lebanese lamb recipes can all be substituted with beef.
I use beef. My only recommendation to you is to use a very lean ground beef, or even ground sirloin for Lebanese hashweh. You don't want to have too much fat rendering off as you brown your meat.
Ingredients for Lebanese Hashweh
- 1 lb lean ground beef
- ⅓ cup pine nuts (toasted)
- 1 small onion
- cinnamon (or sub Lebanese 7 spices)
How to make hashweh
Take your ground beef and place it in a pan with the diced onions, toasted pine nuts, butter or ghee, salt, pepper and cinnamon. Some recipes call to use Lebanese 7 spices instead of cinnamon, however our family just uses cinnamon in this recipe.
A little note on where to buy pine nuts and how to toast them...
When I was a kid, pine nuts were not available in my local grocery store. The only place we could get them was at a small Mediterranean grocery store in town. It was owned by Lebanese people and they imported pine nuts from Lebanon. They were expensive, but so tasty.
Now-a-days pine nuts are available in most chain grocery stores HOWEVER, in my personal opinion, you will be paying an arm and a leg for a very inferior quality of pine nuts, and they usually come in teeny tiny packages with very few nuts in them.
If you do not have a Mediterranean store near you, I highly HIGHLY recommend buying good quality pine nuts from Nuts.com. I usually buy them from my local Mediterranean store, but I have tried Nuts.com and they have very great pine nuts! They offer Mediterranean pine nuts, as well as standard pine nuts. I usually buy the standard pine nuts because they are cheaper (significantly). To me, I don't feel like I am sacrificing any quality by buying the standard pine nuts, they are slightly smaller though.
Check out my full guide on how to toast pine nuts <<< You can toast them in a pan, without oil, on medium heat until golden brown. Pine nuts DO need to be toasted or else they will be slightly bitter in taste. Once they are toasted they will have a sweeter, more nutty flavor as opposed to raw pine nuts.
Back to making Hashweh
Ok so take all of your ingredients and place them in a pan over medium heat. You can add some butter or ghee, it calls for it if you are making the stuffing for kibbeh, but it can also be omitted as well. Brown until all of he meat is brown and the onions are tender. Remove the pan from the heat and drain the grease.
How do you serve hashweh?
As stated before, Lebanese hashweh is very versatile. I use it to stuff baked kibbeh or fried kibbeh and I also use it for meat pies. Another wonderful way to serve it, is to with Lebanese rice with vermicelli and also with Lebanese chicken and rice. Whenever I mix it with any rice, I like to squeeze a lemon over the beef hushwee first, DELISH!
It's delicious when put into so warm pita bread right out of the oven. And it is good on top of hummus with some homemade pita chips (divine!). You can even stuff some veggies with it and bake. YUM!
Beef hashweh is just so stinking easy and good!
Can you freeze hashweh?
Yes! Hashweh is not only super easy and complimentary to so many dishes, it can also freeze really well! If you have extra, just put it in an airtight container and place it in the freezer for up to 3 months. Pull it when you need it and defrost it in the fridge overnight.
Is Hashweh Healthy?
Hashweh is generally healthy. If made with ghee it is considered dairy free. It is also gluten free, paleo, and Whole30 friendly.
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Hashweh (Lebanese Spiced Beef Recipe)
- 1 lb Lean ground beef or ground sirloin or ground round
- ⅓ cup Toasted pine nuts or more
- 1 large Onion diced
- 3 tablespoon Butter or ghee
- ¼ teas ground cinnamon
- ¾ teas salt
- ¼ teas pepper
- Dice the onions and add all of the ingredients into a skillet over medium heat
- Brown all of the ingredients, breaking apart the meat until it is cooked through and the onions are soft and translucent
- Either let cool to stuff into Kibbeh or other recipes, or serve with rice and pita bread