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Turkish Borek with Cheese or Meat Filling


Yields 10 to 12, depending on the size


Prepare the Dough


Combine the ingredients and knead into a unified dough, until the dough is supple and soft but not sticky.


Prepare a large bowl or container (that has an airtight cover). Fill it with half a liter of oil (yes, half a liter).


Portion out pieces of dough each about the size of a tennis ball and roll into smooth spheres. Place in the container of oil. The dough should be completely submerged in the oil. Add more oil if needed. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap, then cover with the lid. Don’t worry, the dough does not absorb the oil. You will only use a little of this oil when working with the dough. The rest you can keep for another time.


Let the dough rest overnight (up to 24 hours).



Combine the ingredients for the cheese filling in a bowl. The mixture should not be too runny. If adding spinach or olives, mix them in now.


Preheat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius and line baking pans with parchment paper.


Combine the ingredients for the sauce. Set aside.


Work with one ball of dough at a time. On a large surface, flatten and stretch the dough gently. Roll out as widely as possible until the dough is thin and almost translucent (you can see the work surface through it). Don’t worry if it tears a little. It doesn’t need to be a neat rectangle.


Drizzle a little oil on the sheet of dough and spread with your hands. Fold over a third of the dough. Arrange the filling in a row along the dough you folded and gently roll up the dough to get a long snake. Twist the snake into the desired shape and place it in the pan. Continue with remaining dough and filling.


Bake at 190 degrees Celsius for 30 minutes until the pastries start to brown.


Remove from the oven and gently brush with the butter sauce. Return it to the oven to bake for another two minutes.


Meat filling: Sauté two chopped onions and three cloves garlic. Drain and combine with 500 grams ground beef, salt, and pepper, and three tablespoons water. For a sauce for this filling, use two tablespoons oil combined with 1/2 cup water.