Filo pastry with Indian knotgrass (Madımaklı börek)

Indian knotgrass or commonly called as Madımak in Turkey,which is a kind of weedy creeping herb, that generally has woody stem and seen at spring.

It is a sine qua non for the Sıvas city cuisine, grows also in the central Anatolia region.

According to Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, it contains antioxidant.

I found this local herb at my neigbourhood market and bought it as a dedicated market shopper.

According to me, with hard leaves the raw Madımak has no taste, but when boiled has a rather similar taste with spinach.

In Anatolian villages, generally served with omelet or a soup dish. Sometimes dried and stored for winter.

  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 sheets of filo pastry (yufka)
  • 500 gr Indian knotgrass (Madımak)(washed and drained well)
  • 100 gr. white cheese (grated)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 onion (grated)
  • Cut the woody stems off and soak the Madımak wash them for several minutes to loosen any specks of dirt. Drain them.

    Place them in a stockpot. Cover with water. Boil for 5-8 minutes. Shake and drain in order to remove any excess water.

    Place the grated onion in a skillet with extra virgin olive oil. Sauté the onion until it begins to purple brown.

    Add the boiled Madımak and turn several times until you are certain that all the leaves are coated

    In a bowl,stir white cheese and egg and combine with Madımak.

    Lay a sheet of filo on the counter top.

    Brush with olive oil and fold in half lengthwise.

    Place Madımak mixture and start rolling from bottom to top.

    Brush with some olive oil.

    Repeat the same with the other filo.

    Place them to parchment paper covered tray.

    Cut it in 4 cm thickness pieces.

    Repeat the same for the other filo.

    Brush top with egg yolk. Sprinkle with nigella seeds and sesame seeds.

    Optionally, refrigerate overnight or you can assemble the pastry a couple of hours ahead of time and chill it until you are ready to bake.

    Bake in 190° C pre-heat oven about 25 minutes until golden brown.

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