Before we get our “Mamma Mia!” on, we’re all going to want a snack, right? What’s better than some delicious daktyla — a yummy, cinnamon Greek dessert also known as ladyfingers! (Check out our tips and tricks at the bottom to avoid any mishaps, bake, eat and enjoy!)
You will need:
A frying pan
A mixing bowl
A rolling pin
A large cooking mat
A plate to serve on
2 cups of flour
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup of water
2 cups ground almonds
1/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 cup sugar
2 cups of water
2 sticks of cinnamon
25 whole cloves
First, start with the pastry:
- Place flour into a mixing bowl .
- Slowly rub the extra virgin olive oil into the flour. This will give you a light, crumbly texture.
- Once the oil is completely combined with the flour, slowly add the water. This step will combine all the ingredients together.
- Knead the mixture for about 10 minutes or until you get a smooth consistency like bread. Let it sit for about 30 minutes — by leaving it to rest the dough, will become softer and easier to work with.
Second, make the filling:
- Place almonds, sugar and cinnamon all into a food processor.
- Pulse the mixture until it is roughly chopped.
Third, go for the syrup (you can also make this as much as a day beforehand):
- Place water, sugar, cloves and cinnamon sticks all into the saucepan.
- Once the syrup starts to boil, turn the heat on low so it is back to simmering.
- Reduce the syrup until it starts lightly coating the back of a spoon.
- Strain the cloves and cinnamon sticks.
- Set aside to cool down.
Fourth, bring all the elements together:
- Cut off some of the dough and roll it into a small ball until it has few to no cracks.
- Lightly flour surface and start rolling it out. With every couple of rolls, you may need to add a small amount of flour. Keep going with this step until it’s about 1 mm thin.
- Roughly cut the dough into 3 by 2 inch pieces.
- For each piece of 3 by 2 pastry, place about a 1/2 – 1 tablespoon of the filling. You will place the filling in the middle of the 3-inch side (lengthwise) — make sure when rolling the pastries that they are tight!
- Fold over the dough and press down the sides.
- Fold over once more and close the end with your finger or a fork.
- Repeat this process until you have finished the dough and the filling. (If there is any leftover dough, you can roll it out, cut it into strips and fry them.)
- Place olive oil into the frying pan. It should be about 1/2 inch of oil.
- Wait till the oil is hot, then turn it to a medium heat.
- Place the pastries into the oil and fry on one side until the pastry is a light golden brown color. Turn over and repeat.
- Once light golden brown on each side, place on a plate covered with paper towels to drain excess oil.
- Repeat until all the pastries are fried.
- Set aside to cool.
- Once they are cooled, place in the cooled syrups for about 30 seconds. Then they are ready to be served!
Tips and tricks
- If you don’t add enough flour, then it will stick to the surface.
- If you add too much flour, it will break when trying to roll the pastry together.
- When adding the filling, leave space on either side as this is what helps to seal the pastries closed.
- If you are struggling to close the pastries, you can brush the edges very lightly with water.
Contact Leonie Leonida at [email protected] .