This sweet Serbian pumpkin pastry achieves its crisp, light layers by meticulous stretching of the dough out until it's hanging over the dining table edges.
- 1 kg plain flour (sifted)
- ½ pumpkin, peeled and grated
- 200 g white sugar
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Makes 4 medium-sized pans of pita
For the dough, mix the sifted flour in a bowl with a little water and salt. When the consistency seems right, break into 3 or 4 equal pieces. Knead each piece well and allow to rest for approximately 10 minutes.
Place one piece onto a floured board for kneading. Knead the dough for about 10 minutes to allow the dough to develop enough elasticity to be stretched out onto a table to form a very fine sheet.
Cover a table with a cotton tablecloth and place the kneaded dough in the centre of the table and start stretching it out (without breaking it) – this needs to be done very carefully and requires a lot of practice and skill. The stretched dough should be hanging off the table (it should look like a table cloth!).
With your hands, trim the edges that are hanging over the edge of the table. This is done walking around the table. Keep these scraps to make a small pita.
Once the dough has been stretched out to a fine sheet and trimmed, lightly splash with oil (either vegetable or olive oil) and then spread on the grated pumpkin and sprinkle the white sugar.
Carefully roll the dough into a snake-like shape and then make a coil and place it in a greased round pan.
Continue the same method with the other pieces of the dough and bake in oven at 175°C for 45 minutes or until the pastry is golden.
Use any leftover dough and pumpkin to make a smaller pita.