This recipe can be found for the first time at Chania during the Second World War. The ingredients for food back then were few and not easy to find. Nevertheless, the Cretan housewives who knew how to cook according with the Cretan traditional cuisine, took advantage of three ingredients (flour, dry onions and olive oil) which they could find in Crete, prepare small pies with onions (commonly referred as kremidokalitsouna).
My recipe for “kremidokalitsouna” is the one that Tasa taught me. Tasa was a wonderful cook and even better woman who I had the luck to have as my mother in law. She used to make delicious Kremidokalitsouna. I will never forget that the first time I taste them, she didn’t tell me that there is onion (back then I was young and I didn’t like onion that much). I only taste the onion in a second pie. Since then they have become an irreplaceable part of my recipes and I feel very proud every time my siblings say that my pies taste the same with those of Tasa.
what you will need:
for the dough:
- 1/2 kilo all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 tablespoon lemon juice
- 250 ml water at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon salt
- plenty olive oil for frying
for the filling:
- 1 kilo dry onions peeled and cut into thin slices.
- 1 small ripe tomato (50 gr), coarsely cut
- a pinch cinnamon
- salt, pepper
- 30 ml, olive oil
the recipe step by step:
1. Prepare the dough:
Place the flour in a bowl. Make a well in the middle of the flour. Add the olive oil, lemon juice, salt and half of the water and mix these ingredients by working them with your fingertips.
Gradually add water, knead by hand until the dough is soft and smooth. Cover with a towel and leave it for 30 minutes.
2. Prepare the filling:
Put olive oil, onions, tomato, salt, pepper and cinnamon in a large frying pan. Sauté and stir gently for about 5 minutes. Transferred the filling in a colander until most of the liquid has disappeared.
Alternatively, place the onions and salt in a bowl. Squeeze strongly with your palms for 5 minutes. Add tomato, pepper and cinnamon, mix well and put in the colander to drain well.
3. Using a rolling pin or a pasta machine, roll out the dough (approx. 0,2 cm thick), on a floured surface, and cut it into circles (about 12 cm diameter).
5. In a frying pan on medium heat put the olive oil and fry the onion pies on both sides until they become golden. Remove and place them on absorbing paper.
Alternatively, place the pies into a lined pan with non-stick paper and brush both sides with olive oil. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180° C for 30′ or until they become brown.
tips and tricks
- If the dough is too sticky, add a little more flour.
- Kremidokalitsouna with raw onions are better baked in the oven, while the ones that have been sautéed onions are better fried in the pan.
- You can freeze them. Place the pies in layers on a shallow pun. Between the layers, add double non-stick paper. Cook them as above, without defreezen.
Bon appetite – Kali orexi