St. Nicholas Serbian Orthodox Church: Serb-Fest

The Annual Serbian festival, featuring a variety of delicious ethnic food and pastries, church tours, kids’ crafts and games, vendors, performances, and live entertainment, is set for September 16.

“Our goal of this event it to interact and engage with our community as well as provide charitable donations.  This year 50% of the proceeds will be donated to an Orthodox Charity, 25% of the proceeds will be donated to our Fr. Srboljub Fund which helps those in need who have fallen on hard times,” tells Patricia Hernjak.

Today, we had a preview of the food featured in the festival– Cheese Gibanica:

For (1) one 9×13 pan:

You need:

9×13 pan

Bowl or glass measuring cup for melting butter

Pastry brush

Hand mixer

 

Ingredients:

12 eggs

12 oz cottage cheese

8 oz cream cheese – cut into small cubes/chunks

4 oz feta cheese – crumbled

Splash of club soda

½  pound phyllo dough (approximately 20 sheets)

½ – ¾ cup melted butter to paint the phyllo (amount will depend on how much is painted on each layer)

  • Thaw the phyllo dough according to package instructions.
  • Crack all eggs into bowl, mix lightly with mixer (until all yolks are broken) but do not over mix.
  • Add cottage cheese, cubes of cream cheese, crumbled feta, and club soda to eggs.  Mix together.  Again, do not over mix – cream cheese should still be in cubes/chunks, as well as feta.
  • Layer into pan
    • Begin with approximately five sheets of phyllo dough, painting each one.
    • Then alternate filling and phyllo dough (1-2 sheets per layer), making sure to paint each layer of phyllo dough with butter, paying attention to edges.  You should use approximately ½ – ¾ cup of filling per layer, sometimes a little more, sometimes a little less.  The goal is to use all the filling.
    • End with, again approximately five sheets of phyllo for the top; making sure the top is fully covered with butter and no dry edges can be seen. This will give you a nice flaky top

Notes:

  • It is important to cover the first and last layers of phyllo completely with butter, especially the very top layer. The middle layers do not have to be covered completely.
  • Every couple of layers the sides of the phyllo should be folded over and painted down (the sheets are slightly larger than 9×13 so stick up on the edges of the pan). This should also be done on the very last layer, make sure no phyllo dough is sticking up around the edges.
  • Except for the measurements, this recipe is not an exact science. Everything should be used by the time you are done but some layers will end up with more than others.  Do not worry if the filling mixture does not entirely cover the phyllo dough of one layer – it will even out when it cooks.

 

Bake for approximately 35 minutes at 350, or approximately 50 minutes if frozen.  Pita is done when top is brown and crispy and toothpick shows no raw egg.

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