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Street Food Recipe: Russian Beef Chebureki

Never heard of chebureki? Well, if you haven’t been to Eastern Europe (and particularly Russia), that’s not surprising! Over there it’s a massively popular street food, and it’s not so different from a Mexican empanada. Chebureki are made from unleavened dough. They’re filled with spices, onions and ground meat, and fried in oil. Pop one as a snack or make a plate as an appetizer to share with family and friends.

No time to make homemade dough? You can also throw these together with raw tortillas from the refrigerated foods aisle at your local grocery store. Read on for our favorite recipe…

Chebureki

Beef Chebureki

(makes 7 servings)

Ingredients:

2 1?2 cups flour

1?2 cup water
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon vodka (optional)
1?2 teaspoon sugar (white)
1?2 pound ground beef
1?2 onion (medium, finely chopped)
6 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon parsley flakes (or finely chopped fresh parsley)
vegetable oil (for deep frying)

salt and pepper (to taste)

Directions:
1. In a large bowl, sift together sugar, salt (about 1/3 teaspoon) and flour. Add olive oil and vodka. Add water to the flour mixture (a small amount at a time) mixing it and kneading dough until it’s even, soft and doesn’t stick to your hands. Add a little more flour if the dough is sticky, or water if it’s stiff. Place the dough aside and prepare the filling.
2. In a separate bowl, mix together ground beef, finely chopped onion and parsley. Season the mixture with salt and pepper and stir in milk.
3. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough until it is about 1/10-1/8 inch thick. Cut circles using a small tea plate. Gather the rest of the dough into a ball and roll again. Repeat until you used all the dough.
4. Place about 2 tablespoons of the filling on one side of the circle, leaving 1/2 inch space at the edges.
5. Fold the other half of the circle over and pinch the edges firmly together using your fingers.
6. Make sure there is no air inside chebureki and the edges are closed tightly.
7. In a large skillet, heat the oil for deep frying (it should cover about 1/2 of a cheburek), reduce heat to medium and place 3 or 4 chebureki into oil (depending on the size of your skillet). Fry chebureki on both sides until nicely and evenly brown (about 5 minutes per each side).
8. Drain on paper towels, let rest for a few minutes. Serve while still hot.
Recipe adapted from mydeliciousmeals.com.
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