Boyos de Spinaca

by Linda Capeloto Sendowski on June 21, 2010

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Boyos de Spinaca y Cheso

Last week on my recipe experiment day, I finally tried something I have been thinking about for years.  My mother, Nona always speaks of how her mother could open up the Masa, or dough for boyos until it was transparent and paper thin.  Once the dough was opened, she would add the filling, then roll it, coil it, sprinkle it with cheese, and bake it.

There is a Ladino web site called Savores de Siempre where I found a recipe for the masa.  It is very easy and to my surprise it is not yeast dough like the one Nona uses when she makes bulemas, which I have posted on this site previously.  No matter what you call them boyos, boyus, or boyuz they are delicious.  You can use other fillings if you like, on the Savores de Siempre site she calls for potato and cheese filling.  Thank you to Savores de Siempre for the wonderful Ladino and recipe!

This is my version of the measurements and instructions from the web site.

1 cup water

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon salt

3 and ½ cups of flour

1/3 cup additional olive oil for the baking pan


5 ounces of fresh prewashed baby spinach

6 ounces of Bulgarian feta cheese (kosher)

½ cup grated (Parmesano Reggiano)

2 ounces of grated sharp cheddar , or Kashkaval (kosher)

Additional Parmesan for sprinkling on top 

For the masa, combine the liquid ingredients and the salt.  Add the flour and knead the dough until it is smooth and elastic.  Break the dough into approximately 14 walnut size pieces.  Roll each piece until smooth and round.  Add the remaining 1/3 cup of olive oil to a baking sheet with 1 inch sides.  Set the little dough balls in the oil and leave them to rest for about one hour.  While the dough rests, prepare the filling.

Use a very sharp knife to chop the spinach.  Place the spinach in a bowl.  Crumble the feta over the spinach.  Add the grated cheeses to the bowl and lightly toss the spinach to mix in the cheese.

When the dough has rested, turn the balls around in the oil of the baking sheet to coat them.  Place a ball of dough on a granite counter or marble stone piece or chopping board.  Flatten the ball and then pick it up and begin to stretch the edges with your fingers very gently.  After it becomes a flat piece, about 6 inches around set it back on the counter and slip you finger tips underneath to gently coax the dough out to about a 10-12 inch square. 

Place some filling across one end leaving a 1 inch border.  Roll up the dough like a cigar.  Then coil the cigar and place on a greased baking sheet.  After forming all of them, sprinkle them with a little Parmesan cheese and bake for 30 minutes in a preheated 350º oven or until golden brown.  Remove the boyos from the baking sheet with a spatula, some cheese may have oozed out, don’t worry that is the good part, and place on a cooling rack.  Enjoy with coffee, Turkish coffee or espresso is best, for breakfast with some fruit.

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