Sunday, 7 February 2016

Bulgaria's answer to Scones!

 
Bulgarian Scones - Kazanlushki Korabii - Казанлъшки корабии
  


These lovely bready balls of goodness are one of my favourite snacks. As a little bit of background Kazanlak is a city in Stara Zagora province in Bulgaria, Situated in the centre of Kazanlak Valley, it has some of the most beautiful countryside in Europe. The valley is also known as the Rose Valley, supplying 80% of the world’s rose oil. Surrounded by the Balkan mountain range and carrying a rich history dating back to Thracian times.


But enough of history, let us get back to these lovely golden soft spheres. I did some research and I don’t really know why they carry their name, what I do know is that they are super simple to make and it will take you about half an hour to have a batch done from mixing to baking. Now purists will probably yell at me for I am about to suggest but I don’t care care. The Kazanlak Scone (yes I am renaming it) actually can be very versatile as an afternoon snack. They are amazing with butter and jam, just butter, just jam, clotted cream and jam, or yogurt. They accompany tea, coffee and hot chocolate like a trooper. You can sprinkle crushed walnuts, almonds or hazelnuts on top. You can add dried fruit such as raisins to the mix before baking. With no further adue here is the recipe:    

Ingredients:

1 cup of yogurt
1 cup of icing sugar
½ cup melted butter
3 eggs - 1 is for egg wash
vanilla or the zest of half a lemon
1tsp Bicarbonate Soda
1kg flour - some for dusting
Vegetable oil for shaping the scones
Sugar/nuts for sprinkling on top


Method:

Pre-heat your oven to 200C’ fan pr 220 no fan.

In a large bowl mix the yogurt and the soda. Add 2 of the eggs - keep the 3rd one for egg washing - icing sugar and vanilla and mix. Start introducing the flour, a bit at a time, when it starts forming a dough get your hands in and mix well. You are looking for a relatively soft and sticky dough, it needs to be just firm enough to hold its’ shape when you make it into a ball.

Line a baking tray with baking parchment and use some oil spray just because you don’t want paper on your scones. I find that otherwise the parchment sticks to mine.

Oil your hands with the vegetable oil. Pull a walnut sized piece from the dough, roll in your hands to make a ball and place on the baking tray. Leave about 2cm between each ball. Egg wash and then sprinkle with the sugar or nuts, put in the oven for 12-15 minutes. Do watch them once they change colour they burn quite quickly. You want them to be a deep golden brown. When they come out they would have grown and will end up touching. Leave them to cool before you take them off the tray. They will last for about a week if you keep them in a sealed box. They will get harder the longer they sit, but that is when you can actually turn them into a stupendously good bread and butter pudding if you have had a giant batch left over.

Bon Appetit!