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Sweet Cypriot Cheese Pastries

09 January 2014 / 18:01:50  GRReporter
3405 reads

Danielle Lachana

Cypriot cuisine is characterized by its freshness and that includes also its sweets and pastries which make good use of fresh cheeses. One such cheese is Anari, similar to an Italian ricotta cheese, which is made from whey. It is a soft, low fat, creamy and light cheese with a mild flavour. It may be substituted in this recipe by Ricotta (preferably the Italian type), or Anthotiro.

Cakes and pastries are not usually served at the end of a meal in Cyprus but during the course of the day, so why not try these pastries for a different mid-afternoon snack with friends:

As they say in Cyprus, ''Kopiaste''  which stands for “Come, sit down with us and share!''

***

 RECIPE

 (Makes about 20)

 

 METHOD

Sift the flour and salt into a bowl. Add the oil and mix it well through the flour. Do the same with the egg yolk and gradually add enough of the water, a little at a time while mixing and kneading, to make a firm thick dough.

Transfer the dough to another bowl and cover with a kitchen cloth/towel. Leave for one hour.

Meanwhile mix together all the filling ingredients mashing the cheese with a fork until fluffy and creamy.

Briefly knead the dough and put on a floured board. Roll out as thinly as possible (it is easier to do this using only part of the dough at a time).

Cut into circles of about 8 cm in diameter (a mug makes a useful 'cutter').

Place 1 tsp of the filling on each circle (see photos below) and brush the edges of each piece with water. Fold in half and press together the edges first with the fingers then with the prongs of a fork to seal.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan, ideally to around 190 C (375 F) if you have a thermometer. If not, the oil is ready when a cube of bread browns in around 30 seconds.

Fry the pastries in batches until golden brown turning over once or twice - they only take a couple of minutes.

Transfer to a bowl lined with kitchen paper to absorb the excess oil.

Arrange on a serving platter and dust with icing sugar and, if liked, sprinkle with rose water or orange blossom water.

The pastries are delicious served warm but can also be eaten cold.

They are best on the same day that you make them.

Next week we will arrive at our new destination, Turkey.

Tags: Mediterranean cuisine Cypriot recipes Cyprus Bourekia Sweet cheese pastries Anari Anthotiro Ricotta
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