Prep Cook Yield Ready In
20 minutes 60 minutes 10-12 1 hour 20 minutes

Algerian Meat Patties for Passover

An extra special dish to enjoy for the holiday.

These meat patties are known as Boulettes de Viande avec des Petits Pois, lamb-beef patties with almond, saffron, and peas. These are a bit time consuming to make, but for Passover, they are extra special and worth the effort.


Recipe excerpted with permission from Too Good To Passover.


  • ¾ pound ground lamb
  • ½ pound ground beef
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 squares of matzah, soaked in cold water 10 minutes then squeezed dry
  • ¼ cup finely ground almonds or almond flour
  • 2 cups finely chopped white onion
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped garlic
  • ¾ tsp kosher salt
  • 1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp ground allspice
  • 1⁄8 tsp ground cloves
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • ¼ tsp saffron powder or threads (optional, but recommended)
  • ½ cup finely chopped mint leaves
  • ½ cup finely chopped coriander leaves
  • ¾ cup finely chopped flat leaf parsley leaves

For frying the meat patties:

  • ½ to ¾ cup safflower or vegetable oil (enough to come up about ½ inch in skillet)
  • ½ cup matzah cake meal (not regular matzah meal), poured onto a medium plate
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten in a small bowl

For the broth:

  • 2 Tbsp safflower or vegetable oil
  • 1 cup finely chopped white onion
  • 1 ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1⁄8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • ¼ tsp saffron threads or powder (optional, but recommended)
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 pound (about 3 cups) frozen peas, defrosted and drained (optional, but recommended)

For serving:

  • 2 squares of matzah, broken into small pieces


  1. To prepare the patties: Combine all the meat patty ingredients in a large bowl, squeezing until meat is soft and smooth.
  2. Heat about ½ cup of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat for 3 minutes (oil should be about ½ inch deep). Test to see if oil is hot enough by dropping a small piece of meat in the oil. If it fries immediately, it is ready.
  3. Place the plate of matzah cake meal and the bowl of beaten eggs beside you as you work. Take ¼ cup of the meat mixture and form it into a meatball with your hands (it will be soft). Gently roll the meatball in the matzah cake meal to coat all sides, then dip completely into the beaten eggs. (Final shape of the patty should be more oval than round.)
  4. Place the patty into the skillet and fry about 5 minutes on each side, or until a medium-dark brown. (Meat does not have to be fully cooked inside as it will be boiled with the broth in the next step.) Place patty onto a plate lined with paper towels to absorb excess oil, and continue until all of the patties have been dipped and fried in this manner, frying several at a time.
  5. To prepare the broth and simmer the patties: Heat the oil over high heat in a large, heavy-bottomed pot for 1 minute.
  6. Add the chopped onions and cook until transparent and soft, 2 to 3 minutes.
  7. Add the salt, pepper, turmeric, saffron (if using), and sugar and cook 1 minute.
  8. Pour the water into the pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Arrange the patties by overlapping them in a spiral shape so as to fit them all in, and bring to a second boil.
  9. Once water is boiling, reduce heat to low, and pour the peas over the top. Cover and simmer for 45 minutes. Uncover and continue to simmer 15 more minutes.
  10. Serve the boulettes hot over broken pieces of matzah with peas and broth spooned over top.

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