Homemade Filo Pastry
Some Albanian recipes work better with the homemade touch. Homemade filo pastry is quick and easy to make!
I’ve always used ready rolled filo pastry but in Albania this can be difficult to find so instead my mother-in-law taught me how to make homemade filo pastry. I was pleasantly surprised (and impressed!) with how quick it was.
The first time may take a bit longer but will eventually only take around 20 minutes to make the dough ready for shaping.
- 3 Cups Flour
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- 2 Cups Water
- Olive Oil
- Mix flour, salt and water together to form a dough, add extra flour if the mixture is still slightly too sticy.
- Kneed for 10 minutes until it becomes elasticated.
- Place in a bowl and cover with a damp teatowel, leave to rest in a warm place for 1 – 2 hours.
For Albanian Pite or whole Albanian byrek:
- Split into 20 / 24 balls and kneed into small discs, place each one on a floured side, dust each disc with flour and cover with a damp teatowel
- One at a time, roll into thin circles placing a drop of oil on each one (brush the oil with a pastry brush over the disc) creating 4 piles.
- Put 2 piles together and roll into 2 large thin discs.
For individial Albanian Bryek spirals:
- Split into 6-8 balls and kneed into small discs, place each one on a floured side, dust each disc with flour and cover with a damp teatowel
- One at a time, roll into a thin circle and brush with oil.
- Pull the edges of the circle with you fingers strecthing the dough, before picking it up and placing it over both hands (using the back of fisted hands). Carefully strech the dough while moving it round in a circle. Lay the dough down and use your fingers to stretch out any remaining thick dough.
- Brush all over with a wash of your choice (I used egg, milk and oil mixed together)but just oil or butter will work.
- Fold one part of the cicle slightly creating a straight line. Add a line of your flling along this edge and then roll. Shape to a small individual spiral.
- Place into a baking try and repeat until all dough has been used. Keep each one as indiviudals or use the next rolled dough to add to a spiral and continue to form one big one.
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