Saturday, July 2, 2011

Swiss Chard Pie

It's summertime. It's time to enjoy every piece of green in the little garden at the backyard including parsley, lettuce, cucumbers and Swiss chard. It's time to bake a pie every other day to enjoy the summertime. It's time to learn how to roll out traditional yufka/phyllo with a rolling pin. I proved to be quite successful with the first few sheets which encouraged me to go on with growing eagerness.  I'm not an expert in the field but they say as you get familiar over time with the texture and rolling process, you can roll out even thinner and thinner yufka/phylloHere are the recipe I came up with and the photographs. Give it a try. You won't regret it!


(for the filling)
1 bunch of Swiss chard
4 tablespoons of vegetable oil
2 medium onions, peeled and chopped
3-4 cloves of garlic
1,5 glasses of warm milk
salt and black pepper

(for the yufka)
3-4 cups flour
warm water 
2 teaspoons of white vinegar
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of sugar
3 tablespoons of olive oil

To glaze
1 large egg yolk beaten


Step 1:
  1. De-rib the chard, wash well, and let the chard drain on a kitchen towel (or some paper towels) for a few minutes, so that there’s no excess water on the leaves. Coarsely chop the chard, and set aside. 
  2. Heat vegetable oil in a saucepan. Add the onion and garlic and saute for a few minutes. Add the chard, mix everything together and cook for five minutes, stirring, until almost tender. Add some salt and pepper. Remove from heat and set aside. 
Step 2:
  1. Add 3-4 cups of flour to a large bowl. Make a well in the centre and add warm water (start with 3/4 cup), 2 teaspoons of white vinegar, 1 teaspoon of salt and 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Mix them all together until you get a soft dough. Feel free to add more water if needed. 
  2. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead by hand, oiling hands if needed, until the dough is soft and smooth for 10 minutes. 
  3. Divide the dough into 10 equal pieces and roll each piece with a rolling pin out to an oval shape yufka/phyllo, about 24 cm across and almost 2 sheets of copy paper thick, sprinkling the work surface and the yufka/phyllo with flour to keep from sticking.
Step 3:
  1. Place a layer of yufka/phyllo in a lightly greased ovenproof dish and spread some chard mixture over the yufka/phylloRepeat layering until all of the chard mixture, and yufka/phyllo have been used up. Do remember to pour some milk on the layers while assembling the pie which definitely helps the pie become juicy. Use remaining yufka/phyllo sheets to cut into strips. Arrange the strips to fit the top of the pie. Brush the strips with the blaze and bake for around 30 minutes or until the top is golden.