Peinirli supergolden bakes

Monday, 9 September 2013


Peinirli was brought to Greece by the immigrants who lived by the Black Sea almost 100 years ago. It is a boat-shaped bread with a Kaseri cheese filling, though meat is often added (and sometimes an egg cooked on top of the filing). The name derives from the Turkish word peynirli, meaning 'with cheese'. This is my version using pasta flour and yoghurt, which keeps the dough very light. I have suggested some fillings below, but almost anything can be used - let your imagination run wild!

These are incredibly tasty - and they went down a storm even with my picky kids. The recipe makes 6 small individual portions - perfect for lunch or snack. Leftovers reheat really well if baked for 10 minutes in a hot oven.

One word of caution. When these babies come out of the oven do not be tempted to bite into them until they have cooled down for a few minutes. The melted cheese hides a molten lava centre and you might want to avoid 3rd degree burns! I speak from bitter experience.

Makes 6 small peinirli

For the dough
260g pasta flour | 2 cups 
100g Total Classic yoghurt | scant 1/2 cup
140ml hot water | 1/2 cup
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
tbsp caster sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp active dry yeast
2 tbsp butter, melted (to brush on while baking)

Fillings (each makes enough for 3)
100g Roquefort cheese, crumbled | about 3 1/2 ounces
pinch salt
Caramelised onion chutney
Smoked pancetta

60g Emmental cheese, grated | 3/4 cup
tbsp melted butter

Optional toppings
• Chopped chorizo
• Sliced tomatoes, capers & oregano
• Chopped ham

Put the flour, sugar, yeast and salt in a large mixing bowl. Keep the salt away from the yeast. In a measuring jug, mix the yoghurt, oil and hot water together. Add to the mixing bowl and mix together using a wooden spoon. Once the dough comes together, oil your hands then mix the dough until all the ingredients are well incorporated. Heavy kneading is not required - just fold the dough together a few times in the bowl.

Lift the dough out and lightly oil the bowl. Return the dough to the bowl. Cover the bowl with cling film or a clean tea towel and leave for an hour.

Lightly flour your work surface and gently knead the dough to knock the air out. Roll into a long log shape then cut into 6 equal pieces. 

Yes those are my freakishly small hands and freakishly thin wrists.
Flatten one of the pieces into a disk then roll out to an oval shape using a floured rolling pin. Fold the ends of the oval in then roll the right edge inwards to create a ridge. Repeat on the other side and pinch the ends together to create a boat shape. Transfer to a tray lined with baking paper and pierce the bottom of the 'boat' with a fork. Repeat with the rest of the dough. Loosely cover with cling film while you prepare your fillings.

Preheat the oven to 220C | 430F. Make your fillings by thoroughly mixing the cheese with the yoghurt. 

For the Roquefort peinirli, spoon some onion chutney on the bottom of 3 cases. Top with the roquefort/yoghurt mix and place some pancetta on top. Try to pack as much cheese filling as the cases will take without spilling over. 

For the Emmental peinirli, spoon the cheese filling into 3 of the cases and either leave plain or top with chopped chorizo or sliced tomatoes and capers or what whatever else takes your fancy.

Brush the dough with melted butter. Bake in the centre of the oven for 15-20 minutes until the dough is golden and cooked at the bottom. Cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Note: this dough also makes great pitta bread. Simply roll into disks, pierce surface with a fork and pan fry on an oiled pan (or griddle) for 2-3 minutes on each side. Makes 6.

  This recipe was developed for and sponsored by Total Greek yoghurt.  

Find me on

In Greece a small piece of butter is added on top of the filling as soon as the peinirli come out of the oven.
Leftovers can be reheated in the oven.
I will submit these to the YeastSpotting Gallery at Wild Yeast Blog.


  1. I've never heard of peinirli but these look incredibly tasty. I could demolish one for lunch right now!

  2. These are so dangerous. They are small and very light and before you blink you have eaten one and craving a second! You should see their size in Greece - bigger than a dinner plate. I am excited to try new flavour combinations - thinking feta or goat cheese with spinach and an egg on top...

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  4. I'm definitely going to try these! They look delicious, and are gorgeously presented.

  5. Roquefort and caramelised onion chutney?? Oh my. That definitely beats the common ham and cheese version!! Gorgeous!
    Eleni @ On Top Of Spaghetti

  6. Amazing that there is greek yoghurt in that! I love your pan, btw. Where did you find it? Beautiful!

    1. Yoghurt works really well in dough. Makes it easy to work with and very light. The pan is from ebay - look for vintage Ovenex : )

  7. Jane Dale-Beaumont27 September 2013 at 21:06

    could you use any other type of flour?

    1. Yes you can use strong bread flour. Even plain flour would probably work. The pasta flour gives a more delicate texture.

  8. I love the merging of the Greek & Italian in this recipe. the pic looks great. I featured it on my Friday Five - Flatbread & Pizza addition over @ Feed Your Soul Too -

  9. Interesting idea. Good variation over pizzas.

  10. Wow! Just wow! I love the photos showing how to shape it and the recipe for the dough and the topping... this is just brilliant! Your recipes are a gold mine!

  11. These look so simple and delicious


  12. looks yummy. love the shape, it'd be nice to involve kids in making their own "boat" pizzas and put their own topping on :) whatever they make themselves always taste better than when mammy makes it :D

  13. These look so delicious, I love the pizza spin!!!