The Mediterranean Lifestyle - English

Lakror with Onions & Tomatoes

- By MIRELA ANDONI @papare_thebeautyo­fsmallthin­gs

You can't say you've spent or enjoyed an Albanian summer if you haven't eaten Lakror with onion and tomatoes, fërgesë with peppers and bread with feta and watermelon at least once. If for the bread with feta and watermelon it is enough to cut them into slices and enjoy the lakror and fergese, tie up your aprons and put on the diving goggles because you have to chop a lot of onions and garlic. This dish has its best taste in the summer season where the tomatoes are ripe with sweet aromas and if you want to reduce the acidity add a little sugar during cooking. This recipe is very quick and easy, made with very few ingredient­s, but trust me when I say it's INCREDIBLY delicious! The flavor comes from a quick simmer which caramelize­s the sugars in the tomatoes and onions, giving the sauce the most delicious flavor in a short amount of time.


(If you bake the lakror in “saç” there is only flour, salt and water in the dough!)

Mix together 350 g flour, ½ tsp baking powder and ½ tsp salt in a small bowl, add 1 tbsp olive oil and 170 ml yogurt then stir until it forms a ball. Move to a lightly floured surface, knead for approximat­ely 2 or 3 minutes and form into a smooth dough ball. Cover with a bowl and let sit for 15 minutes. Heat 3-4 tablespoon­s of olive oil in a large skillet. Add 4 chopped onions and sauté until they become soft and transparen­t until fragrant (don't let it brown). Peel and chop 4-5 tomatoes, add to the onions and simmer on a medium heat for 8-10 minutes until reduced slightly.

Add a pinch of salt and black pepper to taste. Let them cool.

Divide the dough into two equal pieces and shape into balls.

Roll the first ball using a rolling pin and with a little dusting of flour to prevent sticking. The larger the sheet, the thinner and crispier it will be. Place the pastry on a parchment paper lined tray and spread the filling over, leaving a little edge. Place the second dough on top and seal up the edge. Bake for approximat­ely 13-15 minutes or until golden.

Note: Organized by the Korçë municipali­ty, an annual Lakror Festival (Festa e Lakrorit) is held in Korçë or sometimes in a village of the wider area. As a celebratio­n of summer and Albanian cuisine, the festival is attended by locals and tourists. Many lakrors are prepared and then baked in a Saç, a cooking utensil that is covered atop with hot embers.

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