• Moroccan lamb and pine nut cigars (Alan Benson)

I like serving these rolls for breakfast or brunch on the weekend alongside poached eggs and a watercress salad for a nice peppery flavour.






Skill level

Average: 3.8 (16 votes)

They are also good as a nibble with drinks and you can make them smaller to serve with canapés.


  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 brown onion, finely chopped
  • 600 g (1 lb 5 oz) minced (ground) lamb
  • 3 tbsp chermoula (see Note)
  • 4 tbsp pine nuts
  • 10 20 cm (8 inch) square spring roll wrappers
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • vegetable oil, for deep-frying

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Heat the olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Sauté the onion for 3–5 minutes, until golden. Increase the heat to high and add the lamb. Cook, breaking up the lumps with a spoon and stirring, for 5 minutes. Stir in the chermoula and cook for 1 minute. (The lamb doesn’t need to be cooked through at this point as it will cook further when you fry the rolls.) Stir in the pine nuts then set aside to cool to room temperature.

Divide the lamb mixture into 10 portions. Lay a spring roll wrapper on a board and brush one edge with the beaten egg. Place a portion of the lamb mixture on the opposite edge. Fold in the sides and roll up into a cigar shape. Seal the edges with more egg. Repeat with the remaining wrappers and lamb mixture.

Put the vegetable oil in a deep-fryer or a large, deep saucepan and heat to 170°C (340°F). If you don’t have a thermometer, drop in a cube of bread — the oil is hot enough when the bread turns golden brown in 20 seconds. Lower the cigars into the hot oil and cook in batches for 2–3 minutes, until golden and crisp. Remove and drain on paper towel. Serve hot.



• Chermoula is a drier version of a curry paste. To make it, heat a frying pan over medium heat and dry-fry 2 tbsp each cumin, coriander and 1 tbsp caraway seeds for about 3 minutes, or until fragrant. Using a food processor, break the seeds down until coarse.

Add 1 coarsely chopped brown onion, 4 cloves garlic, 2 handfuls coriander leaves and stems, 1 large fresh green chilli, rind of 1 preserved lemon and 3 tsp ground turmeric to the food processor. Blend to a smooth paste, then add 2½ tbsp lemon juice and blend for a further 2 minutes.

Scrape down the side of the bowl. With the motor running, slowly drizzle in 100 ml olive oil. Season to taste.

Put the chermoula in a sterilised jar and seal. Store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.


Hummus and Co by Michael Rantissi and Kristy Frawley (Murdoch Books, RRP $49.99) Photography by Alan Benson.