Winner of the James Beard/ KitchenAid Cookbook of the Year 2000 and Winner of the Beard Award for the Best Writing on Food 2000.
August 8, 2022
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Mangia Bene

    In Alexandria, in Cairo, in the villages of the Nile Delta, a favorite breakfast dish is faṭayr (pronounced fa-TAIR) or faṭīr (pronounced fa-TEER). A faṭīr is a fluffy pan-cooked pastry, a cross between a puff pastry beignet and a crêpe sometimes served as a savory as well as a sweet. The pastry is fluffy, and laminated as modern bakers call it, because the dough is folded upon itself. A delicious savory faṭīr is faṭīr bi’l-sakhīna, there being two varieties of this dish; in the first the pastry is covered with a sauce made of vegetables cooked in vinegar and garlic and the second is a sauce made with chicken poached with onions and water buffalo samna (clarified butter). A wonderful sweet faṭīr can be made with apricot preserves and confectioner's sugar, as well as fresh fruit such as bananas. Faṭīr, derived from the word meaning "to break the fast, to breakfast," is, in fact, often eaten at breakfast.