Wednesday, September 19, 2007
Turkish Spinach Crescents AKA Pida
Color me giddy.
Well, I am sitting on my sofa, writing this post and carefully savoring the spinach crescents you see pictured. (Carefully because crumbs are not happy making...)
There are two things of note in that sentence. Well, three if you count the sublimely tasty snack food...
The first is that I mentioned my new sofa. Yup. It's so purdy. I love it. The Rock Goddess says it's not comfortable though. Then again, that came from a woman who just bought (-warning, image is a bit racy -) this...now really kids, does that look comfy? Hot, yes, but not really what one would call lounge-wear. So, I rest my case. She doesn't get the comfy concept. Then again, she is a Rock Goddess, and I am simply a girl with a blog...but I digress...
The second, and really, much more important (at least to me) fact in that statement I started with is that which allows me to be in this location...I got a laptop! Welcome to the digital age, Rachael!
Yea me! It was a bold choice, lemme tell ya, but I felt I really had to take that leap into the present and...voila, here I am! Thanks for coming along!
So now, for your reading pleasure, I will be able to post from all sorts of exotic locales...The Coffee Bean! T-Mobile Hot Spots! Hotels! The list goes on. I can't wait to explore it.
And what will I treat myself to as I lounge poolside, blogging? Well, Turkish Spinach Crescents of course!
I first had these courtesy of my beloved friend The Chemist's mother. She is Turkish, and made them, and then promised to teach me how to make them. And then moved away. Sigh. Leaving me to fend for myself. It took some time, but I feel confident with the results. Supremely confident. Downright smug really. They are that good.
The secret, I learned, is sumac. Its a snazzy, sour, spice. I really dig it and find it gives just the right sass to this simple, fab, delight.
This is a recipe that is going to seem extreme. It's a bit time consuming, and includes an ingredient you may have to source at a Middle Eastern market. But that all said, it's pretty dang fine, and worth the effort. Then again, you can really skip making the dough and just buy some of the pre-made product too. I'm just saying...
So try this my peaches, and enjoy!
4 tablespoons yeast
¼ teaspoon sugar
½ cup water
4 cups flour (bread flour if you can find it)
pinch of salt
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup lukewarm water
4 cups fresh spinach, finely chopped
1 medium onion, minced fine
1 tablespoon sumac or the juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 tablespoon oil
salt and pepper to taste
Dissolve the yeast and sugar in 1/2 cup warm water, and let that stand in a warm place for 10 minutes until it is nice and frothy.
Stir in the 1/2 cup of flour, cover with plastic wrap and let rise 30 minutes in that same warm place.
To finish the dough, put the 3 1/2 cups of flour in a large bowl, and make a well in the center.
Put in the yeast-and-sugar mixture, salt, olive oil, and 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon of lukewarm water.
Gradually work in the flour to make a soft and sticky dough.
Knead the dough on a floured surface for 15 minutes.
The dough will be very sticky at first, but as you knead, it will gradually cease to stick to your hands.
You should have a damp and very springy dough that offers no resistance to kneading.
Put the dough in a oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise for an hour.
(You can refrigerate or freeze the dough at this point until you're ready to use it.)
Put the dough on a lightly floured surface and roll into a log.
Cut into 8 equal pieces, and roll each one into a golf-ball sized bit.
Place the dough balls on a lightly floured surface, and leave them to rest for 30 minutes under a tea towel.
Preheat your oven to 450 degrees, and if you have them, heat tiles 30-40 minutes before baking.
Roll one ball of dough on a floured surface into a circle 1/4- to 1/8-inch thick and 4 inches in diameter.
Add a bit of the filling in a straight line across the center. (As if you were making an equator with it.) But leave a gap on each edge.
Roll the dough up and then pinch the ends together to create crescents.
Brush the top with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and perhaps a light dusting of Parmesan cheese.
Bake 8 to 10 minutes..
Sumac is a tart and sour spice, with slightly astringent overtones, that is very popular condiment in Turkey and Iran. Uni-Graz.At
The uber sensational Treva strikes again! Scandal! (For the record, not only do I adore her beyond words, but we also happen to be related, ergo my enthusiasm on this subject...)
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