‘Anari ‘ is a Cypriot cheese made from whey. The whey is usually a by-product from the production of halloumi cheese. The whey is brought to boiling point by which time curds will have formed, which are skimmed off to produce this soft cheese.
Anari is not generally known here in the UK yet, but we keep our fingers crossed! I remember when I was a child the same could be said of halloumi, which we brought back by the suitcase-load from holidays in Cyprus, probably illegally!
However if you live near a Greek/ Cypriot grocer I’m sure he could get his hands on some for you if you ask nicely enough.
Anari is available salted or un-salted, once crumbled it resembles slightly dry cottage cheese curds (Though cottage cheese is made from curds and not whey)
I’ve made these bourekia in the past succesfully using ricotta cheese, though if you do try this recipe with ricotta, please try and get the genuine, good stuff from an Italian deli/grocer, the texture will be much more similar to anari. The ricotta I’ve bought in the past from supermarkets has been more cream-cheese in appearance, though even this produces good bourekia – I mean how can anything deep-fried and then covered in sugar and syrup not taste good, right?!
Bourekia are small, half-moon pastries, filled with a mixture of anari, sugar and cinnamon, deep-fried and then dipped in a simple-sugar syrup and sprinkled with granulated sugar.
And as I’d brought some anari back from Cyprus……
1. I crumbled a pack of un-salted anari (300g) and mixed it with 1 scant tbsp cinnamon and 2 level tablespoons of sugar.
|Crumbled anari, cinnamon and sugar mixture|
3. I filled each round with a heaped tsp of the anari mixture, folded the top over into a semi-circle and crimped the edges with a fork (there’s no need to wet the edges with water)
|Filling with anari|
|little ‘pasty’ shapes|
4. I then deep fried the pastries in vegetable oil, on a low/ medium setting (so that the pastry cooks before they turn a golden colour)
While I was frying the pastries I made a simple sugar syrup using a cup of sugar and a cup and a half of water, which I simmered for 5 minutes.
After I’d fried all the pastries, I dipped them briefly in the sugar syrup, then sprinkled them with granulated sugar…
Makes about 30, which is a good job because I could wolf down half of them in one sitting, lol !!!
……..Yummy!…….Do try them…….