Saturday, March 26, 2011

Ground Lamb and Zucchini (Fedicay)

This recipe has a mysterious Arabic name that sounds something like "Fedicay." I can't find it in my Syrian cookbooks, but Sandy, my late mother-in-law, made it often. She delighted me by approving of the personal touches I added, using broth instead of water, mixing in yellow squash for color, and boosting the flavor with a little tomato sauce. I make it a day ahead to allow the fat to cool for easy removal, but if you want to serve it right away, you can easily skim the fat—and there will be some, as that is the nature of even lean ground lamb. But Fedicay is so good!

Serve this soup-like supper with your favorite pilaf and a dollop of yogurt (laban).


1½ - 2 lbs. ground lamb                      2-3 medium yellow squashes
1 large onion, finely chopped               3-4 cups chicken broth, boiling
1 8-oz. can tomato sauce                     2 tsps. Syrian allspice (baharat)
2-3 medium zucchinis                          Salt and pepper

1. Wash squashes well. Slice into half-inch rounds (the thick slicing blade of a food processor is ideal), and reserve. Bring broth to a simmer.

2. Fry lamb and onion in a 6-quart pot. (No oil necessary, the lamb will have enough fat.) Stir until lamb is browned and most of the onion juices have evaporated, 10-12 minutes. Season lamb with salt and pepper.

3. Add tomato sauce to lamb and stir well, cooking for a few minutes to heat through.

4. Lay squash over the lamb. Add enough broth to almost cover the squash. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer until the squash is steamed tender, about 8-10 minutes (or to desired doneness).

5. Remove pot from heat. Add Syrian allspice to taste. Stir/rough chop squash into lamb. Serve with rice or wheat pilaf and yogurt. Serves 6-8.


  1. Another yummy sounding lamb dish. And we so love lamb. Can't wait to try it!

  2. Dawn, this is one of those recipes I can't make without thinking of my mother-in-law. For that reason alone, it's wonderful!

  3. Hooray! Another dish to use up the zucchini! Of course I'll have to wait till July/August when we sneak over to our neighbors' back porches at midnight and leave the zucchini for them.

  4. Hi, JQ. Welcome to Kitchen Excursions! I agree, it's always good to have lots of zucchini recipes, and this one is a winner. Thanks for dropping by!