Taste the World - Afghanistan - Gosh Feel

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* Official name: Islamic Republic of Afghanistan *Motto: 'There is no god but God; Muhammad is the messenger of God' *Capital: Kabul *Religion: Islam  *Government: Unitary presidential Islamic Republic *Area: 251.827 sq mi  *Population: (2015 estimate) 32.564.342  *Currency: Afghani (AFN)  *Time Zone: UTC  *Drives on the: right  *International code: AF  (data from Wikipedia)

For Afghanistan, I found this recipe for Gosh Feel, or 'Elephant Ear Pastries'. They are called such, because you can pinch the corner of the dough to make them shaped like an elephant ear. A light pastry, deep fried and dusted with powdered sugar, cardamom and chopped pistachios. They are surprisingly light and addictive. 

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Gosh Feel  (Elephant Ear Pastries)

Ingredients

  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 ts White sugar
  • 1/4 ts Salt
  • 1/2 c Milk
  • 4 ts Oil
  • 2 1/2 c Plain flour
  • 1/4 c Plain flour for kneading
  • 1/2 ts Ground cardamom
  • Oil for deep-frying
  • 1 c Icing (confectioners’) sugar
  • 1/2 ts Ground cardamom (optional)
  • 1/2 c Finely chopped pistachios

*Note: Pistachio nuts should be blanched. Optionally, same amount of finely chopped walnuts may be used instead of pistachios.

Method:

  1. Beat eggs until frothy, beat in sugar and salt. Stir in milk and oil. Sift flour, add half to egg mixture and blend in with wooden spoon. Gradually stir in remainder of flour, holding back about 1/2 cup. Turn onto floured board and dust with some of reserved flour. Knead for 10 minutes until smooth and glossy, using more flour as required. Dough will still be slightly sticky. Cover with plastic wrap and rest for 2 hours.

  2. Take a piece of dough about the size of a large hazelnut and roll out on a floured board to a circle about 8-10 cm (3-4 inches) in diameter. Gather up dough on one side and pinch, forming a shape resembling an elephant ear. (I pinched them in the center to form bow ties instead). Place on a cloth and cover. Repeat with remaining dough.

  3. Deep fry one at a time in oil, heated to 190 C (375 F) turning to cook evenly. Fry until golden, do not over-brown. As dough is rather elastic, the pastry tends to contract with handling, so just before dropping pastry into hot oil, pull out lightly with fingers to enlarge.

  4. Drain pastries on paper towels. Sift icing sugar with cardamom if used and dust pastries with mixture. Sprinkle with nuts and serve warm or cold. Store in a sealed container.

*Alternative topping: Make a syrup with 1 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water. Bring to the boil when sugar is dissolved and boil for 5 minutes. Dribble syrup onto warm pastries and sprinkle with cardamom and nuts.

 

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