[Sca-cooks] Gullaj/Gullach

Lilinah lilinah at earthlink.net
Wed Oct 15 16:17:52 PDT 2008

I'm trying to track down what modern Turkish gullac is. I find 
recipes using it, and many include photos of the final product, but 
not of the gullac itself. It seems to be some sort of noodle or pasta 
or dough-thing, since it is quite often soaked in milk before being 
used). However, i haven't found a recipe for the pasta itself, or 
photos of the "raw" product, to get some idea of its thickness and 

Anyone have any idea (i'm talkin' the modern Turkish stuff, not the 

Long ago i saved Kiri's recipe for recreated 14th C. Turko-Mongol 
gullach which she posted to this list. I noticed some inconsistencies 
(this is not a smack down, i make mistakes when i post to the list 
and even on my web pages - it's just that i noticed this recently)

>Mix evenly egg white, bean paste and cream [to make a 
>dough].  Spread out [dough] and fry into thin pancakes.  Use one 
>layer of white powdered sugar, [ground] pine nuts and [ground] 
>walnuts for each layer of pancake.  Make three-four layers like 
>this.  Pour honey dissolved in ghee [Muslim oil] over the top. Eat.
>2 Egg whites
>1/2 cup soy flour [Urtatim sez: probably should be mung bean starch]
>1/2 cup table cream
>1/16 cup water [orphan ingredient - not mentioned in recipe]
>[Urtatim adds: butter or oil]
>3 tbsp. Powdered sugar
>1/2 cup Pine nuts, ground
>1/2 cup Walnuts, ground
>3 tbsp. Ghee
>1/2 cup Honey
>1. Mix egg whites, flour and cream to make a dough
>2. Fry into thin pancakes
>3. Mix sugar and nuts together.
>4. Heat ghee and mix in honey
>5. Build 3 layers, alternating pancakes and sugar/nut mixture, 
>finishing with sugar/nut mixture.
>6. Drizzle ghee/honey mixture over pancakes.
>7. Serve as warm as possible.
>As you can see, it does greatly resemble baklava, and Perry and 
>others believe that it is a "proto-baklava".

I have found two omissions.

First: In step 2 one fries the batter. I assume one uses butter or 
oil that is not mentioned in the recipe. So i've added it into the 
ingredients. Which did you prefer, Kiri?

Second: 1/16 cup Water is listed among the ingredients. That is 1 
Tablespoon (an easier way to measure than by the cup :-). However, it 
is not included anywhere in the recipe. Logically it could be used 
either in the batter for the "crepes" or it could be used to thin the 
honey. So i'm wondering where it goes, Kiri.

Third: Kiri mentioned an article by Charles Perry and Paul Buell 
discussing bakalava/proto-baklava/gullach. At the time she posted, 
she didn't have the reference.

Am i correct in thinking that the source is:
Charles Perry, "The Taste for Layered Bread among the Nomadic Turks 
and the Central Asian Origins of Baklava," in "A Taste of Thyme: 
Culinary Cultures of the Middle East", Sami Zubaida and Richard 
Tapper (eds.) (1994) ISBN-10: 1860646034.

Thanks for any clarifications.

Urtatim (that's err-tah-TEEM)
the persona formerly known as Anahita
I have always imagined that paradise will be a kind of library.
  - - - Jorge Luis Borges

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