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Bukta - Jam-Bursting Bliss in a Pastry




Welcome to my next culinary adventure in my cozy kitchen. Today, I am sharing a recipe that brought a touch of sweetness to my friend's birthday celebration.


Here is 'Bukta,' a delightful jam-filled pastry. (Pronounced as 'book-ta'). As I flipped through the book's pages, I stumbled upon a recipe scribbled as a special note tucked away between the pages. When I read the recipe, I remembered the bliss of sinking my teeth into a warm, freshly baked pastry generously filled with a luscious, fruity jam. It's a treat that can make any occasion feel extra special. Knowing my friend's love for apricot jam, I surprised him on his special day.







I will take you step by step through creating this pastry, but I wanted to share some of its history before that. I didn't find a quotable source on its origin. Some food blogs indicate that this pastry has been around in central Europe since ancient times as a stuffed pastry that afforded practical food transportation in shepherds' pockets.


I believe that the true joy of cooking lies not only in the final product but also in the process itself—the shared moments, the delightful aromas, and the sense of accomplishment that comes from creating something from scratch. All of these recipes bring back memories. I hope you like to read about those.


'Bukta' brings back memories of summers, preserving large baskets of apricots to make delicious jam for the winter. As this recipe needs a thicker jam, the best time to bake bukta is when you want to finish up the older jars to make room for the new jam. The older jams would be thicker, making them more suitable for the filling.


'Bukta' is an all-time favorite in Hungary. Its dough is flaky, filled with jam, and remains deliciously fresh even the next day. Traditionally, the filling is apricot or plum jam, but you can also bake chocolate or cottage cheese variations.


So, let's gather our ingredients, roll up our sleeves, and bake a jam-filled pastry that will bring smiles to faces. For those who don't read cursive, I thought I will publish the recipe here in English.


INGREDIENTS

350 ml whole milk (lukewarm)

2.5 tsp active dry yeast (1 pack)

½ tsp icing sugar

500 gr flour

1/4 tsp salt

1 egg

90 gr unsalted butter (room temperature)


For Filling:

Your favourite jam. (Mom always made it with apricot jam. I bought 3 different brands of jams to figure which works the best. No clear winner, but I suggest the 'Bonne Maman' jams.)


For Brushing:

120 gr melted unsalted butter


DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat the milk until lukewarm (can’t be hot otherwise it kills the yeast). Sprinkle the yeast on top w the sugar and let it stand until the liquid rises and is bubbly (for about 10 minutes). (Mom wrote 35 ml milk, which seemed just not enough. I checked several recipes and they seemed to have agreed on 350 ml.)

  2. Mix all other ingredients. If making the dough by hand, stir everything together with a wooden spoon, until the dough gathers. Mix/beat the dough for 5 minutes. (Send curious dog away.)

  3. Cover with cloth, and et the dough rest for 15 minutes.

  4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead it briefly to make sure it is nice and smooth and soft. Place the dough in a bowl and let it raise in a warm place for 35 minutes. (If you are scrolling through the photos, you will see that I had to change bowls, as the first one did not fit into my warming drawer.)

  5. After it rested, roll the dough out on the lightly floured surface, then cut it up into smaller rectangles. (You may need to experiment what size rectangles are the best for the size of Bukta you want. I ended up with 17 pieces. After the first row of 5, I realized that the rectangles needed to be slightly larger, so re-rolled and re-cut the rest.)

  6. Place a spoon full of jam filling onto the rectangles. Roll up each piece in a way that stops the filling from spilling out. (This needs a bit of practice. As you will make it, you will see why a slightly harder jam is better.) Place bukta seam-side down on deep baking sheet. Leave room between the pieces. Brush pieces with melted butter and let them raise for another 15 minutes.

  7. Preheat oven to 375F (convection bake) or adjust temp according to your oven.

  8. Bake in oven for about 25 mins or until golden.

  9. When cooled down, dust Buktas with icing sugar.


Let me know how it worked! Jó étvágyat!





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