[Sca-cooks] Gullaj/Gullach

Elaine Koogler kiridono at gmail.com
Wed Oct 15 17:57:33 PDT 2008

On Wed, Oct 15, 2008 at 7:17 PM, Lilinah <lilinah at earthlink.net> wrote:

> 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 dimensions.
> Anyone have any idea (i'm talkin' the modern Turkish stuff, not the
> historical)?

Not a clue....

> 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)
>  Gullach
>> 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]
This was the best information we had at the time.  It could well be, in
light of new information, that you're probably correct...however, once
again, soy flour is easier to obtain even now, so I probably would continue
to use it.  The only way I could obtain mung bean starch would be by mail
order on the web.

>> 1/2 cup table cream
>> 1/16 cup water [orphan ingredient - not mentioned in recipe] -- see below
>> [Urtatim adds: butter or oil] -- see below
>> 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".
>> Kiri
> 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?

To be honest, I don't remember.  I suspect we probably used butter or ghee
as it would have been more common then.

> 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.

If it goes anywhere, it would be in the batter...we probably added it in to
thin out the batter enough to make it form the very thin pancakes that make
this work.

> 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.

I'm not sure where I would have gotten information about an article by Perry
and Buell.  The only reference I can find in my notes is information
obtained from Dr. Buell...and I suspect, though I don't have a copy of the
email message, that it was in one of several email exchanges I had with him
at the time I originally worked on recipes from "Soup."

> Thanks for any clarifications.

Hope this helps.....


> Urtatim (that's err-tah-TEEM)

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