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Tag Archives | filo pastry

Tray bake filo pastry with ground meat and onions; Kiymali Borek

Turkish tray bake pastry with ground meat and onions; Kiymali tepsi boregi

Turkish tray bake pastry with ground meat and onions; Kiymali tepsi boregi

My parents are visiting from Istanbul; it’s been over three years since they were last here, it really is wonderful to have them in England. Regular visitors of this blog knows that my parents’ love of Turkish food and passion for sharing others have been a major influence on us and hence the share of delicious Turkish cuisine in my blog. You can imagine how excited I am about spending time with parents, cooking together with my mother, gathering  with friends and family to share.

Spread the ground meat & onion mixture over the yufka or filo pastry sheets

Spread the ground meat & onion mixture over the yufka or filo pastry sheets

My mother brought some wonderful yufka, Turkish fresh, paper thin sheets of pastry – a real luxury as I can’t get them here in England. We made this easy and delicious tray bake with ground meat and onions; kiymali tepsi boregi. Another delicious borek you can easily make at home using filo pastry sheets if yufka is not available.

Julia Power

It’s been a week of mixed emotions, as we have all been deeply saddened with the Soma Mine Disaster in Turkey, where, unfortunately over 300 miners passed away..Our heart goes out to all families and souls passed away, May they rest in peace.. Basimiz Sagolsun.. I have come across some wonderful fundraising efforts to help the families and the children, affected by this very sad tragedy. Below are a few of them, if you would like to be a part of this support:

 Turkish Philanthropy Funds

Be the Light for the Soma Children

Londrali.Com Soma Relief Fund

TURSAB’s Fundraiser

My best wishes,

Ozlem

4.7 from 3 reviews
Tray bake filo pastry with ground meat and onions; Kiymali Borek
 
An easy and delicious kiymali borek, Turkish savory pastry with ground meat and onions filling. Yufka, Turkish fresh pastry sheets are used traditionally, but filo pastry sheets also work very well. You can serve as an appetizer or as a morning or afternoon snack with tea.
Author:
Recipe type: Boreks, Turkish Savory Pastries
Cuisine: Turkish Cuisine
Serves: 8-10
Ingredients
  • 3 sheets of yufka Or 12 sheets of filo pastry (each sheet 48cmx25cm), thawed
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 400 gr/ 14 oz. ground beef or lamb (or a mixture)
  • 2 eggs
  • 8 fl. oz. /1 cup whole or semi skimmed milk + extra 2 tbsp. milk for the top of the pastry
  • 4 fl. oz./ ½ cup water
  • 45ml / 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil in a wide, heavy pan and stir in the chopped onions. Sauté over medium heat for 3-4 minutes to soften them up.
  2. Stir in the ground meat to the onion mixture and sauté for another 5 minutes over medium heat. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper
  3. Beat 1 egg and 1 egg white (save the remaining 1 egg yolk in a small bowl for later) and mix with 1 cup of milk and ½ cup of water.
  4. Grease a baking tray with 1 tbsp. olive oil and spread 1 sheet of yufka (with excess of yufka hanging out of tray) or 2 sheets of filo pastry on top of one another.
  5. Spread 3 tbsp. of milk, water & egg mixture evenly over the pastry.
  6. Lay the next sheet of yufka or 2 more sheets of filo pastry. Again, Spread 3 tbsp. of milk, water & egg mixture evenly over the pastry.
  7. If using filo pastry, lay two more sheets. Again, Spread 3 tbsp. of milk, water & egg mixture evenly over the pastry.
  8. Spread the ground meat and onion mixture evenly over the pastry.
  9. Lay the last layer of yufka sheet over the filling and tuck in and fold the excess sides of yufka sheet over the filling as a layer.
  10. If using filo pastry sheets, spread the ground meat and onion filling over the 6th sheet, after spreading the egg, milk and water mixture.
  11. Place 2 more sheets of filo pastry over the filling and continue to spread 3 tbsp. of milk, water & egg mixture evenly over the pastry. Lay the 10th filo sheet spread 3 tbsp. of milk, water & egg mixture evenly over the pastry. Then lay the last two sheets of filo pastry.
  12. Mix 2 tbsp. milk with the remaining egg yolk and remaining 1 tbsp. olive oil (if you have any milk & egg and water mixture left, you can add this mixture too). Spread this mixture over the last sheet of yufka or filo pastry.
  13. Bake in the pre-heated oven (180C/350F) for 20- 25 minutes, until the top of the pastry turns to golden to light brown.
  14. Once cooked, cover with a baking paper to keep moist and cool for 10 minutes. Slice in squares and serve warm.
Notes
If using frozen filo pastry, thaw overnight in the fridge or bring to room temperature 2 hours before using. If you’re using fresh filo pastry kept in the fridge (as in the UK), bring to room temperature 30 minutes before using. Keep the filo pastry covered with a damp cloth as you are working. This will help to avoid it getting too dry or less manageable.
 

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Sigara Boregi – Crispy Cheese and Herb filled Filo Pastry Rolls

Asli Borek, Besiktas; here is the cheese & parsley rolls on display

Asli Borek, Besiktas; here is the cheese & parsley rolls on display

If you have read my previous post on Istanbul, you may already know how much we Turks love a good borek, savory pastries, made with paper thin pastry called Yufka. Boreks are widely available in pastry shops and bakeries, they are also sold on stalls and a hugely favorite street food; delicious and great value too.

It is thought that the Ottoman Palace kitchens devised these tasty treats in order to tempt the precious little princes. These cigar shaped rolls with cheese and parsley is very popular at home. Traditionally the rolls are deep fried in a deep-sided pan, I love this way too as it taste great and crispy. We recently had a go at these rolls in my recent Turkish cookery class and this time we baked them in the oven; the result was still very delicious with a bonus of them being healthier. The rolls disappear very quickly, very popular with children as well as adults. Worth giving a go!

Sigara Boregi; cheese and herb filled pastry rolls

Sigara Boregi; cheese and herb filled pastry rolls

These rolls, as with most savory pastries, are made with paper thin sheets of dough called Yufka in Turkey. As it is difficult to find yufka abroad, I made them with filo pastry sheets and it worked really well. You can prepare the rolls in advance and keep under a damp tea towel in the refrigerator. As with most savory Turkish filled pastries, this borek freeze very well once cooked too.

Serves 4 – 6

Preparation time: 20 minutes              Cooking time: 25-30 minutes

260 gr / 9 oz phyllo (filo) pastry sheets, thawed, or fresh yufka sheets, if you can get

225gr/ 8 oz feta cheese, crumbled

60gr/2 oz shredded mozzarella

2 eggs (one for the filling, one for brushing the boreks)

1 bunch / 1/2 cup chopped flat leaf (Italian) parsley

Salt and pepper to taste

15 ml / 1 tablespoon olive oil

15 ml / 1 tablespoon whole milk

Bowl of water to seal the rolls

Preheat oven to 180 C / 350 F / Gas 4

Cheese and parsley mixture for the Sigara boregi rolls.

Cheese and parsley mixture for the Sigara boregi rolls.

Mash together the cheese (feta and mozzarella), 1 egg, parsley and the milk to form a smooth paste. Season with salt and pepper.  However, if the feta cheese is already salty, you may wish not to add salt.

Place the filo sheets on a flat surface. Keep the pastry covered with a damp cloth as you are working. This will help to avoid it getting too dry or less manageable. Working with one sheet at a time, cut the filo into strips about 10-13cm/4-5in wide. Keep the strips covered with another damp cloth.

Fold over the pastry from each side to seal in the mixture.

Fold over the pastry from each side to seal in the mixture.

Lay one strip of filo and place a tablespoon of the filling along one of the short ends (take care not to overfill as the filling may ooze out while cooking). Fold over the pastry from each side to seal in the mixture and then roll up like a cigar.

IMG_0067

Wet the end of the pastry with water to seal.

Wet the end of the pastry roll with water to seal.

Wet the end of each pastry roll with water to seal. Continue, keeping the finished ones covered with a damp cloth as you work. It would be ideal to cook straight ahead, but you can cover with a cling film and refrigerate for an hour or so if you need to.

Brush the pastries with olive oil and egg mixture .

Brush the pastries with olive oil and egg mixture .

Mix the olive oil and the other egg in a bowl. Grease the tray with a little olive oil. Brush the pastries with olive oil and egg mixture and bake until they are golden brown, about 25 – 30 minutes.

Crispy, delicious Sigara boregi, ready to be enjoyed!

Crispy, delicious Sigara boregi, ready to be enjoyed!

You can serve these delicious rolls, Sigara Boregi, hot as part of a meze spread. We also like to eat them as morning or afternoon snacks and they also go down very well for lunch next to this Coban Salata – Shepherd’s Salad of tomatoes, cucumbers, onions and parsley with olive oil and lemon dressing.

Cheese and parsley filled cigar rolls, Sigara Boregi.

Cheese and parsley filled cigar rolls, Sigara Boregi.

Afiyet Olsun, I hope you can have a go at this easy and delicious treats and enjoy,

Ozlem

A Delightful & Delicious Turkish Restaurant  – Karakoy Lokantasi, Istanbul

Karakor Lokantasi, Istanbul - a charming restaurant with delicious mezzes.

Karakoy Lokantasi, Istanbul – a charming restaurant with delicious mezzes.

Karakoy district of Istanbul is buzzing with exciting eateries; there is the Gulluoglu Baklava, one of the best in town; then the Namli Deli & Kebabs next door – a feast to all senses with the wonderful kebabs, mezzes, vegetables cooked in olive oil and more. While in Istanbul, friends this time took me to the Karakoy Lokantasi, placed along the same line with all these wonderful eateries; this buzzing, charming restaurant was a great treat and did not dissapoint us.

Jars of pickled vegetables displayed at Karakoy Lokantasi.

Jars of pickled vegetables displayed at Karakoy Lokantasi.

The restaurant serves delicious, traditional Turkish mezzes and main courses and has been buzzing with locals and foodies constantly getting in and out. Their meyhane – tavern style dinners, I hear is especially popular with more variety of  deliciuos mezzes, so booking recommended.

Eggplants stuffef with onions, pepper and tomato; Imam Bayildi, and many more at Karakoy Lokantasi

Eggplants stuffed with onions, pepper and tomato; Imam Bayildi, and many more at Karakoy Lokantasi

A delicious array of vegetables cooked in olive oil greeted us; Imam Bayildi – eggplants stuffed with onions, tomatoes, peppers, stuffed vine leaves – sarma-, runner beans (french beans also works) cooked in olive oil with onions and tomatoes, all freshly cooked and so delicious.

 

Hunkar Begendi - Sultan's Delight; chunks of delicious meat served over the eggplant puree

Hunkar Begendi – Sultan’s Delight; chunks of delicious meat served over the eggplant puree

I tucked in the delicious Hunkar Begendi – Sultan’s Delight of chunks of delicious meat ragout served over the eggplant puree.  This dish is one of the landmarks of our cuisine and very popular at home. Apparently when Empress Eugenie, the wife of Napoleon III, visited Topkapi Palace – Istanbul as a guest of the Sultan, she admired the puree so much that she sent her chef to Topkapi Palace to learn the technique. Once you’ve mastered the eggplant puree, it goes well with any grilled meat and chicken. Here is the recipe if you would like to have a go at Hunkar Begendi.

Fried anchovies, hamsi; so fresh and delicious

Fried anchovies, hamsi; so fresh and delicious

Anchovies, hamsi is a popular fish in Turkey, and they are especially very popular in the Black Sea Region. My friend enjoyed this lightly fried anchovies with a rocket salad, a popular way to serve fish at home.

kaymakli Ayva tatlisi - Quince dessert with Turkish clotted cream

kaymakli Ayva tatlisi – Quince dessert with Turkish clotted cream

 Have you ever tasted Turkish quince dessert, Ayva Tatlisi? It is one of my favorite desserts and we had to have a go at this one at Karakoy Lokantasi, looked so inviting (and tasted amazing). To make this dessert, we pouch the halved quince with its seeds and skin, adding sugar and cinnamon stick  for about 1 1/2 hours. The skin and the seeds of quince give this dessert its glorious color. Topped with Turkish thick clotted cream, kaymak, this dessert is an absolute treat.

Ciragan - Spring is in the air in Istanbul.

Ciragan – Spring is in the air in Istanbul.

Happy travels, Afiyet Olsun,

Ozlem

 

 

 

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Turkish Rose Ravioli – Gul Manti or Sosyete Mantisi

 

Gul Manti – Turkish Rose shaped ravioli, very delicious with garlic yoghurt.





Manti was a central dish in the 15th century Ottoman cuisine. A very popular dish, it was cooked in imperial kitchens and was eaten by Sultan Mehmet II almost daily. This version of manti, traditionally made with “yufka”, the fresh pastry sheets, is a popular one at home. These manti are named for their appearance, as it looks like the shape of rose. They may seem a little awkward to make but look so attractive that the extra effort is worthwhile. If you replace the meat with a vegetable of your choice, (for instance, mushrooms or eggplants would work well), it would also make a very impressive vegetarian main course.

Rose ravioli is a great dish for entertaining and I like to serve it with a leafy salad or steamed vegetables. It is the asparagus season at the moment and they go very well with the rose ravioli.

Serves 3- 4 (makes 12 rose raviolis)
Preparation time – 45 minutes Cooking time – 25 – 30 minutes

260 gr / 9 oz filo pastry sheets, thawed
225 gr / 8 oz ground (minced) lean lamb
1 onion, very finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
260 gr / 9 oz tomatoes, finely diced
1 bunch or 1/2 cup Italian flat leaf parsley, freshly chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and freshly grounded black pepper

3 fl oz / 1/3 cup meat stock

For garlic yoghurt:
260 gr / 9 oz natural plain yoghurt (Greek yoghurt works well)
2 garlic cloves, crushed with salt

For red pepper infused sauce:
1 tablespoon butter or olive oil
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Dried mint to sprinkle over to finish the rose ravioli

Preheat oven to 350 F / 180 C

For best results, thaw the frozen filo pastry in the fridge overnight and bring it to the room temperature 2 hours before using. That enables the filo thaw completely. If it is sold fresh as in the UK, you only need to bring the filo to the room temperature 30 minutes before using.

Sauté the onions with some olive oil for a couple of minutes, until soft. Add the ground meat and the garlic, cook for 3-4 minutes, until most of the liquid is evaporated. Stir in the tomatoes and gently cook for another couple of minutes. Season with salt and pepper, add the parsley and mix well. Set aside to cool.

On a dry surface, place 2 filo pastry sheets on top of one another and cut in half horizontally to form two rectangles. Place 1 tablespoon of the meat mixture in the middle and roll like a cigar. Then, starting from one end, roll the cigar shape into a rose shape sealing the end with a little water. Make sure you seal all the openings/cracks with a little water. Repeat this with all rectangles.

Brush the gul manti with a little olive oil and place them on a greased tray. Bake in the oven for about 20 – 25 minutes or until golden.

Take the gul manti out of the oven once they are golden brown. Then place a dessert spoonful of stock on each hot manti and put in the oven for another 5 minutes to soak up the stock. The finished rose mantis should be nice and crispy outside and moist inside.

For the garlic yoghurt; whisk together the yoghurt and the crushed garlic until smooth and creamy. Put this mixture in a heat resistant glass bowl and put this in a pan of hot water for a couple of minutes to luke warm the garlic yoghurt.

For the red pepper infused sauce; melt the butter (or gently heat the olive oil) in a small pan. Add the red pepper flakes and mix well.

Place the hot rose ravioli (gul manti) on a serving dish. Pour the garlic yoghurt over it first then dribble the peppery sauce over the garlic yoghurt. Finish the dish by sprinkling dried mint over it and serve immediately.

Note:1) Fillo pastry dries out very quickly and becomes unworkable. To prevent this, keep the pastry sheets under a damp dish towel, and only take out one at a time. Also, cover the manti you prepared with damp towel until cooking. Any left over pastry can be rolled up, sealed in a freezer bag and kept in the freezer.

2) You can freeze the baked gul mantis. They can be successfully reheated on a greased tray (at 350 F / 180 C for about 15 minutes or so)

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