Breads & Doughs
with special thanks to ilovefood.com.mt website
Basic Pasta Dough
2/3-cup all-purpose flour
1tsp olive oil
Make a well in the middle of the flour on a rolling board.
Combine egg with water, oil and salt.
Pour into the flour well.
Work the mixture with your hands, folding and kneading the dough over and over.
The dough should be well mixed and no longer sticks to your hands. (About 10 minutes)
Let the doughball stand for about 1-hour.
Roll and stretch the dough a little at a time until it is paper thin.
Cut the pasta into 1/8-inch strips and hang to dry on a pasta rack.
Let dry at least 30 minutes.
Cook in salted boiling water.
You can shape this dough the way you like
250g unsalted butter chilled & diced
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
ice cold water
Sieve the flour. Add the salt.
Add the lemon juice and mix well.
Add water gradually to make elastic dough.
Knead until the dough is smooth and does not stick.
The resulting dough should be very soft.
Roll out the dough, making it twice as long as it is wide.
Spread 1/3 of the butter chunks over the dough.
Fold the lower third toward the top.
Fold the upper third toward the bottom on top of the first fold, to end up with a three-layered rectangle.
Now turn the folded dough 900 clockwise so that the left side is at the top.
Flatten the pastry and roll out gently as before. Once again place more butter chunks, fold over the edges and flatten the pastry.
Leave to set in a cool place 15 minutes. Repeat the rolling out, turning over, flattening and chilling of the pastry three more times.
The pastry is then ready for use.
750g plain flour
120 ml ice cold water
pinch of salt
Sift flour and salt into a large bowl.
Cut the fat into small cubes and add to flour.
Process fat and flour together until a breadcrumb like mixture is obtained.
Add water, 1 tablespoon at a time and start binding.
As the mixture starts to come together, continue binding by using your hands, until a round ball of dough is formed.
Wrap dough in cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Take the dough out of the fridge, let it stand for some minutes and knead it on a lightly floured surface.
Divide pastry in half; one for the base of the pie and the other half for the top. Roll out one piece until large enough to lie prepared tin to the desired thickness with a rolling pin while re-dusting the pin and surface lightly with flour if you need to stop the pastry sticking. Roll the other half until large enough to cover the pie.
- 1 packet yeast
- 1 cup of water
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- Anchovy (to your taste)
- Oil for frying
- Confectioner’s sugar
Dissolve yeast in 1/2 cup warm water with a pinch of sugar
Set aside for 10 minutes to proof
Stir remaining 1/2 cup water in bowl, and beat in the flour forming a soft dough.
Mix the very small pieces of anchovies.
Knead the dough for about 10 minutes by hand and 5 minutes in a mixer with a dough hook.
Put the dough in greased bowl and turn to coat. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 1-11/2 hours.
Heat abut 2-3 inches of oil to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
Break off golf ball-sized of pieces of dough and fry until light golden brown.
Drain on brown paper or paper towels, and dredge with confectioner’s sugar.
NOTE: Though the recipe gives anchovy as an ingredient you can use cod (bakkaljaw) instead but do not dredge with confectioner’s sugar
Zeppole (Sfineg Ta’ San Guzepp)
For the Sweet Choux Pastry:
- Fine Caster Sugar
- Pinch of Salt
- Large Eggs
- Finely Chopped
- Finely Chopped
- Oil for deep frying
For the Rikotta Mixture:
- Dark Chocolate
- Chopped Candied Peel
- Icing Sugar
- Anisette Liqueur
For the Sweet Choux Pastry:
In a pan, melt the butter in water together with sugar and salt, on low heat. When butter is melted, bring mixture to boil.
Remove from heat and add the flour, mixing just enough to incorporate into the liquid.
Return the pan to a low heat and stir gently until the mixture leaves the side of the pan (about 1 minute).
Once again, remove the mixture from heat and allow to cool.
In the mean time lightly beat the egg and add the finely chopped lemon and orange zest.
When mixture is cool enough, slowly incorporate the eggs into the mixture, beating with a wooden spoon.
Add enough eggs for the mixture to be glossy and flows back when pushed.
Deep fry spoonfuls of the mixture until evenly browned all over.
For the Rikotta Mixture:
Beat the ricotta with the icing sugar and anisette liqueur until you have a light creamy mixture.
Add the dark chocolate, 60g of the almonds & candied peel and mix well. Reserve the rest of the almonds
For the Assembly:
Slit the deep fried pastries and coat with honey then dip in the reserved almonds.
- 540 ml vegetable oil for frying
- 35 g all-purpose flour
- 2 g baking powder
- 0.3 g salt
- 2 g white sugar
- 5/8 eggs, beaten
- 70 g ricotta cheese
- 0.4 ml vanilla extract
- 15 g confectioners’ sugar for dusting
Heat oil in a deep-fryer to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
In a medium saucepan, combine the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Stir in the eggs, ricotta cheese and vanilla. Mix gently over low heat until combined. Batter will be sticky.
Drop by tablespoons into the hot oil a few at a time. Zeppole will turn over by themselves. Fry until golden brown, about 3 or 4 minutes. Drain in a paper sack and dust with confectioners’ sugar. Serve warm.
This is a very typical and popular Maltese snack
Thick slices of crusty bread
red ripe tomatoes, halved and seeded,
sea salt and freshly-ground pepper.
Pick your favourites of the following or use them all
fresh basil leaves
fresh mint leaves
Cut tomatoes in half and with each half rub the slices of bread. Pour the olive oil on a flat plate and press the tomato side of bread into it Replace the tomato half on the slice of bread, sprinkle with salt and pepper and any of the garnish you like Pile onto a serving dish and decorate with fresh basil or mint leaves.
You have to have a starter. If you don’t, no worries, it’s really easy to make your own.
All you need is a clean jar and some flour and water.
Put a tablespoon each of water and flour in a clean jar and stir with a plastic spoon or chopstick. Do not use metal utensils. Store in a warm place away from direct sunlight.
Repeat this every morning, add another tablespoon of water and a tablespoon of flour, and stir and cover for seven days and on the eighth day you’re ready to start on your first loaf/rolls/ftira/pizza/focaccia.
In the bread machine pan, put 1/2 cup starter
slightly less than 1.5 cups water
3 cups strong high gluten flour (very important you use strong flour with at least 11gr of protein)
2 tsp sugar
1½ tsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil
1.5 tsp yeast
Put everything in the bread machine on the yeast cycle. When it’s done, take out the dough and let it rest for about five minutes. Divide in 3 equal parts. Take each part and work it to a loaf. Cover and let it rest until double in size for about half an hour but it really all depends on how warm your kitchen is. Bake at 425F for about 12-15 mins. Again, it depends on your oven, so keep an eye on it.
Now that you made this, don’t forget to feed your starter every day. Just add equal amounts of water and flour and this can go on for years! If you need to go on holiday or just need a break from making bread, just store the starter in the fridge. When you’re ready to use again, take it out, feed it and use it at room temperature.
25g yeast 345ml
luke warm water
1 tablespoon milk
Mix the flour, salt and margerine. Add the yeast. Make a mixture of the luke warm water, sugar and the milk. Add on to the flour and knead the mixture well until the dough is white and elasticated. Place in a bowl, seal with cling film and a wet dish towel, place in a warm place for about 1 hour. Work the dough, cut into small pieces (50g). Place on a baking tray, paste with egg, cut with a knife and let the pieces rest for about 15 minutes. Bake in oven 232C (gas mark 6-8) for 12-15 minutes
Nothing beats the aroma of a fresh bread taken out of the oven. For many poor people (“ftira tal-forn”), was their only daily meal – lunch (“fatar”), or dinner (“fatra”). Traditional “ftira” was made with an unbaked loaf dough, flattened in a medium sized plate and covered with ripe red tomatoes, olives and capers. They fold the edges of the dough inwards and drizzle with oil, sea salt and pepper and baked until golden brown.They baked various qualities of “ftira tal-ħemi”.
Herrings (“tal-bakkaljaw”), – herrings, chopped onions, garlic, bold cod, oil, and parsley.
Curd cheese (“tal-ġbejniet”), – thinly sliced potatoes with small round cheeslets on top.
Anchovy (“tal-inċova “), – anchovy, tomatoes, onions and basil, topped on sliced potatoes,
Whitebait (“tal-makku”), – whitebait rolled in flour, sweet marjoram, sliced onions, and spearmint.
Onion (“ftira tat-toqlija”), – lightly fried onions, garlic and ripe tomatoes.
Method for making the dough (ghagina)
Mix 600g plain flour and 2 sachets yeast, with 60g melted butter, 3 tbs olive oil and some salt; work into a dough by adding water as necessary. Spread some olive oil on a work surface and kneed for about ten minutes; rest until doubled in size then use as required!
Gozitan cheesy pizza:
Line a dish with baking paper and put the bread dough on top of that; then layer the following on the dough: cheese slices, ġbejniet cut in slices; one thinly sliced potato (cooked in some water in the microwave oven for about 7 mins.), one sliced onion; Anchovy and tomatoes sprinkle with salt and pepper, sesame seeds and fennel seeds, drizzle with olive oil.
Bake in a hot pre-heated oven (250 fan) for about 15 minutes.
Apostles bread ring
800g plain flour
1 tsp sugar
1 x 11g sachet dried yeast
1/4 tsp bread improver (if using)
1/4 tsp salt
550-600ml warm milk
1 tbsp sesame seeds
8 whole almonds, skins on and soaked in water
You will also need a little milk for glazing
Mix together the flour, sugar, dried yeast, salt and bread improver in a food processor till the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add in most of the warm water and pulse together till a dough is formed. Continue to mix the bread dough in the processor until it is smooth. Place the dough onto a lightly floured surface and continue to knead for a couple of minute until smooth. Put the dough in a clean bowl, cover and allow to rise in a warm place until double in size. This should take approximately 45 minutes. Next, transfer the proved dough onto a clean surface and knock out the air. Roll into a long sausage and join the two ends together to form a ring. Place the bread ring on a baking tray and brush lightly with milk. Sprinkle over the sesame seeds and press the almonds into the top, evenly spaced apart. Allow to rest again until the ring is double in size. Bake the bread ring in the oven at 200`c until the top is golden brown.
Yeasted Sesame Rings (Qaghaq tal-Hmira)
Mix the dry ingredients together and kneed into a soft dough.
Allow to prove for 1 hour.
Cut into desired size, roll and mould into a ring.
Press onto sesame seeds allow to prove again for 30 minutes, bake in a hot oven temp 175
400 g flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
100 g margarine
100 g sugar
50 g can dried orange peel finely chopped
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
grated rind and juice of 1 orange
50 g roasted almonds roughly chopped
1. Sift flour, add baking powder and rub in the margarine.
2. Beat egg in a bowl and add the sugar.
3. Mix the egg and sugar well an add to the flour.
4. Add orange juice together with all the other ingredients.
5. Mix well and add very little water to obtain a rather stiff dough.
6. Divide dough into four portions and form each portion into a long flat roll.
7. Bake in a moderately hot oven until light gold in colour.
8. Allow to cool completely.
9. Cut the baked rolls in 1 cm thick slices and bake again until golden and crisp.