These Turkish pastries are made with a very light puffy yogurt pastry and are best eaten straight from the oven. They are one of the most popular pastries we make at the cookery school, as the pastry is so forgiving to make. The squash filling is spiced up with Aleppo pepper, my new favourite flavour enhancer.
Dietary: Vegan Option
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
- 100g butter, melted
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 egg
- 150ml plain yoghurt
- 280g plain white or brown flour or a mix
- 1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- pinch of salt
- 250g squash
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 200g feta, crumbled
- 1/2 tsp Aleppo pepper
- 1 egg, beaten
- freshly ground black pepper
- sesame seeds to sprinkle
Pre-heat the oven to 180C/Gas5.
To make the pastry:
- In a large bowl whisk together the yogurt, olive oil and egg.
- Add the melted butter and whisk again.
- Sieve in the flour with the bicarbonate of soda and the salt.
- Mix together to make a soft smooth dough like pastry. If it is too sticky add a little more flour.
To make the filling:
- Mix together the squash with a little oil, salt and pepper and roast until the squash is soft.
- When cool, stir in the feta, chilli and half the beaten egg (reserve the rest of the egg for brushing the crescents) and
- season with black pepper.
To construct the fataya:
- Divide the pastry into 12 portions and roll each into a ball about the size of a golf ball.
- On a floured surface roll out each ball into a circle approx 12 cms in diameter.
- Divide the filling into 12 and place a portion on the middle of each pastry circle.
- Dampen the edges of the pastry with water.
- Bring the sides of the pastry circle together to form a 3 sided triangular pyramid.
- Press the seams together.
- Brush with beaten egg, sprinkle with sesame seeds.
- Place on the prepared baking tray and bake in the pre-heated oven for 25 minutes or until crisp and golden.
- Best eaten warm with a tahini dip. To make the dip mix 150ml light tahini with a pinch of cayenne and juice of one lemon. At this point the mixture is a dense thick paste. Add a little water, tablespoon by tablespoon, until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Try different fillings to suit the season: peas, broad beans, spring onion, grated courgettes in the summer, a spicy sweet potato, chickpea, red pepper and chilli filling in winter.
- The filling is delicious as a dip if you haven’t got time to make the fatayer.
- You can make a dairy free version by omitting the feta and using soya yoghurt and margarine in the pastry.
- Aleppo pepper is a Turkish dried and flaked chilli pepper, not very hot, similar to an ancho in heat levels with a sweet slightly smoky tomato-like flavour. Use instead of paprika and black pepper as it will add colour and a little kick of spicy heat.