Barbajuan are small, cheesey stuffed pastries shaped like a half-moon. These tasty treats originated in Monaco and are a staple on Monaco’s National Day. They take a little time to make but are well worth the effort. The crust is salty and flaky and the ricotta, leek, and swiss chard filling has a hint of sweetness from the caramelized leeks.
Start by making a simple olive oil pastry dough in your food processor.
Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate while you make the filling. Saute leeks and onions until they start to brown and sweeten. Then add the spinach and Swiss chard.
Pour the veggies in a bowl and add the parmesan and ricotta. Set aside to cool and roll out your pastry dough to about 1/4 inch thin. Cut into 1-1/2 inches rounds, you should get about 20-24. Brush the edges with egg wash and drop 1 teaspoon of filling into the center.
Fold the dough over and seal edges well with a fork!
Heat some vegetable oil in a heavy pan or deep fryer and fry in batches of about 7. They will take about 5 minutes per batch.
Remove to a paper towel lined plate and finish the remaining Barbajuans. You should probably cut one in half and try it out as soon as possible.
My favorite part is the unexpected sweetness of the leeks and onions, paired with the rich pastry dough and salty cheeses! They are great the next day as well so feel free to prep them on Saturday while watching Qualifying… and drinking champagne, of course.
Here’s the recipe!
• 1-1/4 cup flour
• 1/2 tsp. salt
• 1/4 cup olive oil
• 1 egg, beaten
• 3-5 tablespoons water
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• 1/2 medium sweet onion, finely chopped
• 2 tablespoons leeks, white parts only, finely chopped
• 2 cups chopped spinach and Swiss chard
• 1/2 teaspoon oregano
• 1/3 cup ricotta
• 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
• 1 egg, beaten
• Salt and Pepper
• Vegetable oil for frying
1. Add flour and salt to bowl or food processor and pulse to combine
2. Drizzle in olive oil, 2 tablespoons of the egg, and slowly add water 1 tablespoon at a time until a firm dough forms
3. Turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes
4. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes
5. Meanwhile for the filling, heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat
6. Add onions and leek and sauté until starting to lightly brown, about 5 minutes
7. Add the spinach, Swiss chard, and oregano. Sauté until greens are tender or about 5 minutes longer.
8. Place in a bowl to cool, add cheese, remaining egg, and season to taste
9. Roll out dough on a lightly-floured surface and cut into about 1 1/2″ rounds, yielding 20-24
10. Brush edge of round with egg wash and place 1 teaspoon in the center
11. Fold dough over to form a semi-circle; press edges with tines of fork to seal
12. Repeat with remaining rounds and play on a tray to prepare for frying
13. Heat 1-1/2″ vegetable oil in a deep fryer or dutch oven to 375 degrees
14. In batches, add pastries to hot oil and fry until starting to brown, about 5 minutes
15. Transfer to paper towel lined plate and serve warm or at room temperature