Monday, May 26, 2014

It may seem odd to stuff bread with fat and spices, but the idea is extremely ingenious: the fat runs out through holes pricked in the dough, becomes the medium in which the bread is fried, and leaves behind its flavor and an array of spices and herbs that make it taste strikingly like pizza crust.

Serves: 4
Working time: 40 min
Rising time: 45 min
Cooking time: 20 min

1 package active dry yeast
¼ pound mutton or beef suet (about 1 cup, tightly packed)
3 tablespoons chopped parsley
½ cup finely chopped onion
¼ heaping teaspoon ground cumin
1 dried red chili pepper
1 heaping teaspoon paprika
2 cups unbleached flour
1 teaspoon salt
4 teaspoons sweet butter, melted


  1. Sprinkle the yeast over 1/4 cup lukewarm water. 
  2. Stir to dissolve and let stand in a warm place for ¼ minutes, or until the yeast has become bubbly and doubled in volume. 
  3. Meanwhile, make the filling. 
  4. Chop or grind suet; pound the parsley, onion, and spices in a mortar or chop finely to a paste. 
  5. Mix with the suet and set aside. 
  6. Mix the flour with the salt and make a well in the center. 
  7. Pour in the bubbling yeast and enough lukewarm water to form a ball of dough. (Add more water if the dough seems hard to handle.) 
  8. Knead well until smooth and elastic, about 20 minutes. 
  9. Separate the ball of dough into 4 equal parts. 
  10. Lightly flour a board. Begin patting the first ball of dough down to a disc shape, stretching and flattening it to make a rectangle approximately 8 × 14 inches. 
  11. Spread one-quarter of the filling in the center. 
  12. Fold the right and then the left side of the dough over the filling. 
  13. Press down on this “package” and begin flattening and stretching it (with the filling inside) until it is the same size (8 × 14 inches) as before. 
  14. Repeat the folding, this time right side over center and left side under. 
  15. Repeat with the remaining 3 balls of dough. 
  16. Set aside, covered, in a warm place for 45 minutes. 
  17. Heat the griddle. 
  18. Prick the “packages” with a fork six or seven times on both sides. 
  19. Place on the griddle, they will begin to fry in the fat released from their fillings. 
  20. Fry the “packages” 10 minutes on each side, until crisp. 
  21. Dot each package with a teaspoonful of melted butter before serving.


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