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Wednesday, April 4, 2012

BOREKA WITH SEPHARDI EMPANADA RECIPE

Pumpkin Borekas 003

(Borekas can be any shape with any filling)
Photo from: The Boreka Diary

Turk. börek (fr. boerek, Turkish pastry), Eng. boreka, burek, Turkish meat pie, turnover. Gitlitz points out that during the Spanish Inquisition, Jews and Jewish converts were condemned for making these pies as this was considered a heretical practice. At one point 200 Portuguese Jews were shipped from Brazil to Portugal to be tried for heretical practices, including borekas. Today’s Sephardic borekas, meat pies or empanadas are descents of those pies. The name is based on the type of dough. Originally these consisted of flaky pastry with different layered fillings. Muslims introduced these in Spain during the Middle Ages. They developed into spring rolls filled with minced meat, a sweet almond, cheese or other filling. They are so versitle that they can be boiled, baked or cooked on a griddle. They should not have excess oil but should be crisp and light. They can be eaten warm or cold, for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. [Aguilera. 2002:83; ES: Arabic. Apr 2, 04; ES: “Quick.” Jul 20. 95; Gitlitz. 1999:224:227-228; and Perry. “Notes.” 2001:254]

BOREKAS - BRAZILIAN MEAT PIES ADAPTED FROM GITLITZ pp 227-228

Ingredients

Borekas

Photo by: dafbit 
Boreka Dough: 
1 pkg dry yeast
1 c oil
1 c ice water
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
5 c whole wheat flour

Filling
1 ½ tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove mashed
1 onion chopped
1 ½ lb ground beef

Spice Mixture
2 tsp sugar
1 ¾ tsp mixed spices (ginger, nutmeg, saffron and mace)
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper

Pie topping
1 egg beaten
2 tbsp sesame seeds
½ c wheat bran

Preparation:

Dough:
Combine yeast, sugar and warm water and let sit 5 minutes.
Sift the flour and salt. Add the yeast mixture and oil. Knead well. If dough is sticky add more flour. Roll into a ball and cover with a cloth. Let sit 30 minutes.

Filling:
Heat the oil in a large frying pan. Fry the garlic over medium heat. Add the onion and fry until  translucent. Add beef and fry stirring to keep from sticking together. Continue frying until meat is no longer pink.

Mix the spices. Add them to the meat. Stir and simmer 3-4 minutes.

Remove the filling from the heat. Stir in the wheat bran. Let this sit for 5-10 minutes for the flavors to blend.

PREHEAT OVEN TO 350º F/190º Ç

Lightly grease a cookie sheet.

Knead the dough. Roll it into small balls the size of an egg and roll each out flat into a rectangular shape about ¼” thick.

Place 2 tbsp of the filling in the center of each rectangle. Fold over the long sides and end of the dough. Pinch to seal.

Brush the tops with the beaten egg and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Bake 10-15 minutes or until golden brown.

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