Mom used to make these pastries quite often while we were growing up, and they disappeared quite fast too once they were out of the oven. They were that fabulous and everyone who came in contact with them loved them dearly. The dough that made them irresistible was easily available in any supermarket back in Abu Dhabi (the place I grew up in), I haven't been able to find them here in the city. My brother bought these when he came home recently from the Gulf, and I had a great time making these beautiful heavenly pastries.
So this is the ready made dough, remove it from the freezer a few hours before you start with the process. Now move on to your filling, I used three types of filling here... a vegetable one, a minced beef filling and a cheesy mushroom filling.
Getting started on the beef filling, saute chopped onions and green chillies in a pan...
Till the onions have turned translucent with a slightly brownish tint.
Drop in your cooked mince and give it a good mix. (The mince has been cooked with a little salt, ginger & garlic paste, little pepper powder, wee bit of garam masala and turmeric powder previously). Mix everything up... add enough quantity of salt.
Finally drop in some chopped coriander leaves and mix it up. Your beef filling is ready.
For the vegetable filling I used only capsicums and potatoes. First you saute onions and green chillies till they turn translucent.
Then drop in some chopped capsicums... I used coloured ones here, they look nice don't they? All the bright vivid colours... saute them along with the onions for a few minutes.
Now add pieces of cooked potatoes, salt, pepper and mix everything up. There you go, your veg filling is ready.
For the mushroom filling just follow the same steps of sauteing the onions and green chillies till they turn translucent, then drop in the chopped mushrooms. Cook it for a few minutes, then add pepper and salt and mix the whole thing up. Now your mushroom filling is ready.
This is the fun part... rolling out the dough and stuffing it. Make sure your workplace is clean and then sprinkle some flour on the surface. Roll out your dough, keep sprinkling flour in between to avoid sticking. Roll the dough out into a huge sheet and then cut it into smaller rectangles as shown.
Add the filling to these smaller sheets and pinch the edges close with a little water. The edges will stick easily enough if you dab one side with a little water.
To make a braided pastry, use a larger piece of rectangle and cut 2 inch strips along its edges.
First fold one strip, then dab a little water to its end and then fold the opposite strip over it. Continue this process...
Till the whole thing is braided up... then stick it in the oven till it attains a golden brown colour.
This is the cheesy mushroom filling, first you add the mushroom filling to the centre and then scrape some cheddar cheese over it. Dab water to the edges and close it up.
You can shape them any way you want...
This is the braided vegetable pastry. Place the pastries in an oven and bake them till they turn a nice golden colour. Then turn them over and bake for a few more minutes, till they achieve an even light brown colour all over.
Oh Boy! Here they are, just out of the oven... and smelling great.
The different types of pastries... they were all lovely.
This is the cheesy mushroom one.