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  • Writer's pictureKyveli Papaioannou

Nostalgic Delights: Plump Cheese-Filled Bourekakia Recipe with a Touch of Heritage


Cheese-filled bourekakia
Cheese-filled bourekakia

I have fond memories of my mother crafting those treats for me to bring to school. Plump and brimming with cheese, they took on a reddish hue due to the egg within the filling. They glistened as they were delicately brushed with an egg yolk. Almost every Sunday morning, she would call me to join her in the kitchen to start preparing them together. My most cherished moment was when I would take the small rolling pin, delicately open the dough into thin sheets, and with the guidance of a cup, cut out round pastry shapes to be filled with the savory mixture. She affectionately referred to them as "bourekakia with cheese."

This recipe can be made deliciously either by baking in the oven or frying in a pan. If you opt for frying, remember to generously sprinkle sesame seeds and drizzle honey for an extra layer of flavor.

Ingredients:

Dough:

  • 250 g yogurt

  • 300 g butter

  • 7 g baking powder

  • 400 g all-purpose flour

  • 200 g bread flour

  • 5 g salt

  • 25 ml olive oil

Filling:

  • 250 g anthotyro cheese

  • 150 g feta cheese

  • 150 g gouda cheese

  • 50 g gruyere cheese

  • 2 eggs (100 g)

  • 1 egg yolk for brushing

  • 75 g yogurt

  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper

  • 1 tsp finely chopped fresh dill (optional)

Instructions:

Dough:

  • In a large bowl, mix together the yogurt, butter (cut into small pieces), baking powder, all-purpose and bread flour, olive oil, and salt until you have a uniform and soft dough.

  • Cover the bowl securely with plastic wrap, ensuring that it makes direct contact with the dough to prevent it from drying out. If you don't protect it with the plastic wrap, it will develop a dry crust on its surface that you'll need to remove. Place it in the refrigerator to rest for 5 minutes.

Filling:

  • In a bowl, mix together the anthotyro cheese, feta cheese, gouda cheese, gruyere cheese, eggs, yogurt, ground black pepper, and optionally finely chopped dill until well combined.

Assembly:

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).

  • Take the dough and, using a rolling pin, roll it out into thin sheets about 2-3 mm thick.

two hands holding a wooden a rolling pin, roll the dough into a thin fyllo
rolling the dough for bourekakia recipe

  • Using a cup or glass, cut round pastry sheets from the dough.

round rolled out dough on a floured surface
round rolled out dough for bourekakia recipe

  • Place a small spoonful of filling in the center of each sheet and fold the pastry in half to create a half-moon shape.

  • Continue with the remaining dough and filling until all the ingredients are used. If you have extra dough, you can wrap it well in plastic wrap and store it in the freezer for future use. When needed, place it in the refrigerator overnight to allow it to thaw smoothly without losing its elasticity. The next day, follow the assembly steps as mentioned above.


stuffed bourekakia
stuffed bourekakia with cheese filling


Baking:

  • Place the bourekakia on a well-buttered baking sheet or parchment paper. Brush the tops with the egg yolk.

  • Sprinkle generously with sesame seeds.

  • Bake in the preheated oven for about 20-25 minutes, until they become golden brown and crispy.

Storage:

  • These bourekakia are delicious served cold. It's worth preparing a few extra and storing them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They can be stored for up to one week.

Alternative Frying Method:

  • Heat ample olive oil in a frying pan.

  • Fry the bourekakia until they turn golden brown. Drain them on paper towels to remove excess oil.

  • Sprinkle with sesame seeds and drizzle with honey. Enjoy them while warm.

These Plump Cheese-Filled Bourekakia are a delightful treat that can be enjoyed as a snack, appetizer, or even as part of a meal accompanied with a vegetable salad. It is also a beautiful opportunity of crafting together with our loved ones and enjoy our fruits of labour.


people around the table full of food while smiling to a cute dog sitting among them
Shared Traditions: Bourekakia Adorn the Dining Table

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