Today I introduce you with Bafra’s traditional festive food, Bafra nokulu. Bafra is a county of Samsun city in Karadeniz (Black Sea) Region and nokul is a kind of traditional pastry which is made in different ways in many different regions and cities. That’s why I especially mention it as Bafra nokulu. You can find nokul in this way just in Bafra.
The situation is actually the same as for the kaygana recipe. There is a nokul in almost every region, but they are all different. Their common point is that the dough is rolled, filled and sealed. It’s made with ground meat and raisins or walnuts and raisins in Sinop and with tahini or ground yellow poppy seeds in Isparta for example.
But our topic is Bafra nokulu. A light sweet pastry with raisins and hazelnuts. It’s Bafra’s is indispensable food during the bayrams (religious holidays). If you visit ten houses in a day, it means that you will eat nokul ten times. You can fins it in every house.
I said that nokul is a light sweet dessert, but it is possible to increase the amount of sugar in both the dough and the filling of course. But for me there is no need for this. Because the raisins in it also make a huge sugar contribution.
How should the consistency of the nokul be?
The consistency of the nokul is somewhere between soft and hard. While it should be of a soft consistency due to its yeast dough, the sugar melted in it gives it a slight hardness. I am talking about an elastic hardness by the way, do not think of a stone hardness. Perhaps it may be more accurate to say tight. Maybe it can be considered as a delight made of dough.
How is Nokul Made?
Nokul, in very general terms, is obtained by rolling a yeast dough into leaves thicker than phyllo dough leaves, sprinkling with sugar, raisins and hazelnuts and rolling them again. As with any local recipe, there may be changes from home to home for the nokul. You can also make changes according to your taste. You can use walnuts instead of nuts, you can add cinnamon, crushed cloves or allspice if you want to flavor it a little. I have never encountered or tried before, but I think that dried figs will be as good as raisins.
Enjoy the recipe…
For the dough;
- 1 egg (white and yolk is separated),
- 1/2 cup of warm water,
- 1/2 cup yogurt,
- 1/4 cup of olive oil,
- 1 teaspoon of instant yeast,
- 1 tablespoon of sugar,
- 3-3.5 cups of flour.
For the filling;
- 2 cups of hazelnuts,
- 2 cups of raisins,
- 1/2 cup sugar,
- 2 spoonful of butter.
- Put the raisins in a bowl and add enough boiling water to pass them over, and set aside,
- For dough, combine water, yeast and sugar into a deep bowl and mix,
- Add and mix yogurt, egg whites and butter,
- Slowly add flour and knead until you get a dough that does not stick to the hand,
- Make a ball and cover it and rest 30 minutes.,
- Pulse the hazelnuts finely in a food processor,
- Drain the raisins,
- Mix hazelnuts, raisins and sugar in a deep bowl,
- Melt the butter,
- Knead the dough again and divide it into 5 pieces,
- Take one of the pieces on the floured counter(rest the others covered) and roll it in a large rectangular shape with the rolling pin to be thicker than baklava dough,
- Spread butter with a brush and sprinkle with raisin mixture,
- Roll from the long edge in the form of a clynder,
- Slice the clynder three fingers thick and place it into a baking tray covered with greaseproof paper,
- Roll and prepare the remaining dough pieces in the same way, slice and place them into the tray,
- Add a tablespoon of water into the egg yolk, mix and brush over the nokuls,
- Bake in a preheated oven at 190 degrees until golden brown.