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branzoaice or romanian sweet cheese pie in a small basket
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Romanian Sweet Cheese Pies – Branzoaice

Sweet Cheese Pie, Branzoaice or Poale-n Brau: this is a Romanian sweet cheese pie recipe made with cottage cheese and raisins.
Course Sweets
Cuisine Romanian
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings 16
Calories 274kcal
Author Adina

Ingredients

  • Yeast dough:
  • 450 g/ 15.9 oz/ 3 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • 42 g/ 1.5 g fresh yeast OR 30 g/ 1 oz/ 2 tablespoons active dry yeast
  • 200 ml/ 6.7 fl.oz/ scant 1 cup lukewarm milk
  • 4 tablespoons sugar divided
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Filling:
  • 500 g/ 17.6 oz/ 2 ¼ cups cottage cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 150 g/ 5.3 oz/ ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • a pinch of salt
  • 100 g/ 3.5 oz/ ½ cup raisins
  • 65 g/ 2.4 oz/ 1/3 cup semolina
  • 1 small egg for brushing
  • icing sugar

Instructions

  • Start by draining the cottage cheese in a fine-mesh sieve thoroughly, for about 3 hours.

Yeast dough:

  • Sieve the flour in a large bowl or in the bowl of your food processor. Make some space in the middle, crumble the fresh yeast or sprinkle the active dry yeast in there, add 2 tablespoons of the lukewarm milk, and 1 tablespoon of the sugar. Let rest for about 15-20 minutes until quite frothy.
  • Add the rest of the lukewarm milk, 2 eggs, the remaining 3 tablespoons sugar, and the salt. Mix well and add the vegetable oil.
  • Knead well with the food processor until the dough is elastic and doesn't stick anymore, but keep in mind that the dough should be soft. If you knead the dough by hand, you might have to add a little bit of extra flour when kneading, but don't overdo it, the dough should remain soft.
  • Form a ball and let it rise in an oiled bowl for 1 hour, covered with a clean kitchen cloth and in a warm place. I usually place the bowl in the oven and turn the oven light on. Just the oven light, not the oven itself! The dough should have more than doubled its size by the end of one hour.

Filling:

  • Place the drained cottage cheese into a bowl. Add the lightly beaten egg, sugar, vanilla extract, lemon zest, salt, raisins, and semolina and mix well.

Form:

  • Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius/ 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line the baking tray with baking paper.
  • Roll the dough into a large rectangle about 3-4 mm/0.11-0.15 inches thick. Divide it into 16 smaller squares. Divide the filling between the squares, about 1-2 teaspoons into each square.
  • Beat the egg needed for brushing the pies in a small bowl. Lightly brush the free edges of the pies around the filling.
  • Take two opposite corners of the pastry and press them well together, in the middle, with your fingers. Take the other two opposite corners and press them well with your fingers as well. Press along the lines that are formed as well, so that the pastries are closed. Make sure that the pockets are really well sealed so that they will not open in the oven.
  • Brush the pastries with the beaten egg all over and bake them for about 15-20 minutes or until deeply golden brown.
  • Let cool slightly, dust with icing sugar, and enjoy warm or cooled.

Video

Nutrition

Serving: 1sweet cheese pie | Calories: 274kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 50mg | Sodium: 214mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 17g