Boulanee are fried pastries traditionally filled with gandana (an Afghan leek), however these can be substituted with other types of leek. Boulanee are traditionally made for special occasions and parties and therefore would make a perfect addition to any Christmas gatherings you're planning this year. 

Ingredients                                     

Makes approximately 15 

450g white plain flour

225ml water

450 gandana or leeks (trimmed weight, washed and finely chopped)

3 tsp salt

1tsp of chilli powder

1 tbs vegetable oil, plus extra for frying

Method

Put the flour and 1 teaspoon of salt into a mixing bowl. Add slowly as much water as required and mix to form a stiff dough. Place the dough on to a clean work surface and knead for about 5-10 minutes until the dough is elastic, smooth and shiny. Form the dough into a small ball, cover with a damp cloth and set aside for at least half an hour. 

Squeeze out as much water as possible from the leeks and put into a colander. Add 1-2 teaspoons of salt and 1 teaspoon of chilli powder and lightly fry the leeks in 1 tbs of oil until they begin to soften, then set aside to cool a little. 

Divide the dough into 3 or 4 balls. Roll out each ball as thinly as possible on a lightly floured surface (thickness should be no more than  1.5 mm - if the dough is too thick the boulanee will be tough). Take a round cutter of 13-15 cm (a pan lid can be used), and cut out as many rounds as possible. The number of boulanee will depend on how thinly the dough is rolled and the size of the cutter used. A smaller cutter may be better if you wish to serve the boulanee as a canape. 

On half of each round spread about 2-3 tablespoons of the drained leeks. Moistened the edges of the dough, fold over and seal shut. The boulanee should be spread out on a lightly floured surface until ready to fry. Do not place one boulanee on top of the other as they will stick together. 

When all the boulanee are made and you are ready to serve them, heat enough oil in a frying pan and shallow fry one or two at a time, browning on both sides. Keep warm until all finished. 

Best served when crisp and hot, straight from the frying pan, however they still taste great if served cold. Also delicious served with a yoghurt dip.

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