The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Rainy day Phyllo

Faith in Virginia's picture
Faith in Virginia

Rainy day Phyllo

This is my first Blog so I figured I would start it out with something that looks good enough to eat.  This morning was one of those rainy dreary days that just screamed take a nap.  But instead I headed to the kitchen to fend off the rainy day blues.  I'm well stocked on sourdough breads, English muffins, challah, and croissants so I decided to play with something new, Phyllo.  Today was all about the dough and I had no great plan for what to do with the phyllo once it was made, so I made dough.

I went on line and searched for recipes and decided on this one

I followed the recipe with the exception that I used olive oil and not vegetable oil and high gluten flour not all purpose flour

Recipe from Kaffeehaus – Exquisite Desserts from the Classic Cafés of Vienna, Budapest and Prague” by Rick Rodgers

  • 2 2/3 cups (270 g/13 oz) unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon (1 1/2 g) table salt
  • 1 cup less 2 tablespoons water (210 ml), plus more if needed
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil (60 ml), plus additional for coating the dough
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) cider vinegar

(Hope I used the proper credits here just a copy and paste from the website above.)

As far as the mixing goes I put it all in the KA with the dough hook mixed on low speed until it was mixed then 2ed speed for 10 minutes with the occasional scraping down the hook.  The dough was quite soft and supple and reminded me of a sourdough after the final bulk fermentation.  I let the dough rest for 2 hours oiled and covered with plastic wrap.

I cut off small pieces a bit larger then a golf ball.  You can see the other items on the counter to give a reference as to the size.

Top of the picture you can see I hit them first with the rolling pin.  The lower of the picture is after hand stretching.  I used the same technique as a pizza dough.  I did try other ways.  Just the rolling pin did not get the dough very thin.  There is another way using a dowel (stick) I guess it takes practice but I kept throwing the dough across the counter slinging it around a stick. 

One thing to keep in mind this required a bunch of bench flour.  But the dough was so nice it did not tend to dry out as you were working it.  But lots of flour keeps it from sticking to itself. 

I also did them in stages giving the dough a chance to rest between stretches.

More hand stretching and using the light over the counter to see what needs more stretching. (at this point this would be one thin crust pizza.) I was really surprised by the stretch this dough has.

Then more stretching while on the counter. I used the counter edges to hook the dough so I could stretch it easier. More flour dusting to keep it from sticking to another sheet when stacked. The outside edges were a bit thicker. I could have stretch the edges more but I just cut them with the pizza wheel cutter so that the dough was quite equal in thickness.

This gives you an idea on how thin this dough can stretch. In this picture I put my recipe for pizza sauce under the stretched dough. I know you can read the recipe so the credit is

I cut, dusted, and stacked all the phyllo dough.  I must say it was huge fun but also took some real time so I would not try this on a tight schedule.  For the time involved I wondered if it was worth the effort when you can just buy it frozen in a box.  NO!!! Sorry I just can't do the frozen box thing.  It was totally worth it.

So now I have a pile of phyllo dough. After all that work I needed some kind of reward for my efforts so I decided on easy turnovers.

Nothing fancy here and standard phyllo practice.  Lay down a sheet, paint with melted butter.  I did take a mix of  1 cup graham cracker crumbs and 1/3 cup brown sugar and dusted in between the layers. Then lay down another sheet butter and crumb mix. I think I did about 8 layers. Trim and cut the dough into squares I put the edge scraps into the square pieces. In a pinch I used a can of pie filling that was taking up space in the cabinet for way too long.  Fold them into triangles butter the top and use the rest of the crumbs on top.  375 degree for about 18 to 20 minutes.

Great cure for the rainy day blues.


dabrownman's picture

an amazing talent and the patience of a ...... dead person to get it that thin.  That is way past 'window pane'. Very impressive.  Making your own phyllo must be about the most rewarding thing the kitchen can offer for a rainy day.

Way to go - Canned pie filling never had it so good.  Talk about artisan - whooey -  you just gotta have Faith! 

Faith in Virginia's picture
Faith in Virginia

Thanks dabrownman,  the canned filling ....arrrg.  But, was better then the sardines sitting next to the pie filling.  I should have checked the age of that can it was one of those pushed to the back of the shelf and forgotten years ago things.

dabrownman's picture

with canned pie filling so long as it is aged properly in a cool and dark place :-)

dwcoleman's picture

I'd love to learn how to flock dough to make it that thin, I don't have that much patience though.

Faith in Virginia's picture
Faith in Virginia

That was my first time making Phyllo.  It is really surprisingly easy and it was fun.  You should really give it a try.  Take the phone off the hook, lock the doors, put on some good relaxing music and go for it.  This dough was quite forgiving and gave me pleanty of time to work it out.

eliabel's picture

Very good work! Congratulations!

Syd's picture

That gives new meaning to the word windowpane.  Excellent work and nicely documented. 



bnom's picture

You must have a lot of patience and counterspace!  Seeing your fully stretched dough reminds of the first time I made pasta.  I had no idea what I was doing but was making lasagna and figured fresh was better (this was back in 1974).  I handrolled the pasta to a large sheet that covered my work table (a process that took forever because I didn't know about resting the dough).  A cat chased a chicken into the house, the chicken ran across the dough - puncturing it and  knocking over a houseplant which spilled soil on the dough.   I managed to carve away the contaminated parts to make a very memorable lasagna. 

Faith in Virginia's picture
Faith in Virginia

What a funny story.  Think I would cry or make chicken/cat soup after that one. 

Counter space ...While becoming a kitchen/baking appliance collector/horder all space is at a premium.  I will be expanding my kitchen space into a room that I use for storage.  Then what do I do with all the stuff stored there?  I'll move it to an outbuilding.  The outbuilding needs major repairs and is full of stuff.  Then I need to find a place for all that stuff....What I go through just to bake bread. ;-)