INGREDIENTS (makes 20-24 Pilavuna)

For the Filling 

250g grated hellim 
250g grated mature cheddar / pecorino / gruyere cheese
2 tbsp dried mint 
2 tbsp semolina 
1 tbsp baking powder 
6 large / 8 medium eggs, whisked well
1 tbsp caster sugar 
100g sultanas 
Pinch of cinnamon 

For the Pastry

750g plain flour 
1 egg 
2 tbsp yoghurt 
100g margarine / vegetable shortening / butter 
350ml warm water 
1 tsp sugar 
1 tsp salt 

To Finish 
1 whisked egg 
10 tbsp sesame seeds
3 tsp nigella seeds
1 tsp aniseed 


Mix together all of the filling ingredients and leave to one side (the sultanas will swell up nicely in the moist mixture too, you could prep the filling a couple of hours earlier and just pop in the fridge). 

Melt the margarine / butter in a jug with 100ml boiling water, top up with another 250ml of cold water and add to a large bowl. Add in the whisked egg, yoghurt, sugar and salt, then add the flour a little bit at a time, using your fingers to bring everything together. 

Once all of the flour has been added, place the dough on a floured surface and knead for a few mins until smooth. 

Spread a little olive oil in the bowl and pop the dough back in. Cover with a tea towel and leave for 15-20 mins. 

Preheat the oven to 200c (fan) / 220c conventional. 

Now start to roll out your dough. Cut it into two-three pieces as you need to roll it out thinly (not too thin otherwise it’ll be difficult to work with, but about 0.3cm) on a floured surface. 

Once you’ve rolled it out, take a 12cm saucer and cut around it. Pop 2 level tbsp of the filling in the centre, spread it out a little, then bring up the sides of the pastry disk in 3 pieces so that the round shape now becomes a triangle. 

Brush the pastry all over with the beaten egg, then gently push down the corners of the triangle with a fork so that they don’t split open when cooking. Gently pat the seeds all over the pastry so that they are embedded, then brush with a little more egg. 

Place on a baking tray lined with baking paper (I fit 4-5 Pilavuna on each tray and have 2 trays in the oven on rotation at any one time). 

Once you have 8 Pilavuna ready, pop the trays in the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. By the time they’re golden, the next 8 will be ready to go in the oven 

Once cooked, put the Pilavuna on wire racks to cool. Repeat until all of the pastry and filling mixture has gone.

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