Friday, 7 October 2016

Using Up What's in the Fridge: A Frugal Twist on Afghan Borekai

The first snow fell today. It is grey and cold and miserable out there. The kind of day that begs for comfort food.

It was also the kind of day when you come home tired and cranky to an empty fridge. This normally calls for ordering pizza, but in our quest to keep our food bill down, we decided we would just make do. 

Here is what we had: one onion, two sweet potatoes, mushrooms, green cabbage, celery and a can of salmon. With some flour in the cupboard, we settled on a slightly creative version of Afghan Borekai. Borekai, which is the Pashto word for a common Afghan dish (known in the Dari as Bolani) is typically filled with either a potato or a leek filling, but occasionally in the autumn pumpkin can be used as well. (See my earlier recipe for cauliflower and cilantro bolani).

We pressure cooked everything together except the mushrooms and salmon. Mashed it altogether, then added a little tomato paste, ground coriander (tastier if you if you have fresh), salt, pepper, smoked paprika, crushed red chilli peppers and olive oil. Then added the salmon and very finely chopped mushrooms and combined thoroughly.

At the same time as we were pressure cooking, we were making the dough. Since It was getting late we used our Kitchen Aid mixer (LOVE it!), but if you have more time you can use a bread machine, or make your own, too.

We Rolled the dough into very thin circles, roughly the size of a personal pizza. Spread the filling generously on one half, then folded them over into crescent moons.

We put a tiny bit of butter onto a hot cast iron skillet and cooked until lightly browned. Topped it with a pure, thick yogurt  (Greek style, or a chaka/laban) and some parsley, but you could use any greens you have on hand.

A pure delight on a cold autumn day.

The next morning, we found a creative use for the leftovers by topping them with fried eggs and onions. Such a tasty and filling breakfast, the perfect fuel for my daughter to go out and play in the snow.

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