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Hello everyone!
I know I haven't updated my blog for a long time. There have been several changes in my life and it has been a hectic summer. My adventures in America that started in Orlando will now be continuing in Gainesville. Yes, due to changes in my husband's work, two weeks ago we said goodbye to Orlando. I am sorry that int he midst of moving and settling in I've neglected my blog.
I'm returning to blogging with a bit time-consuming, but delightful traditional Turkish dish...MANTI :)
I hope you'll try it, you won't regret it! Its delicious taste is worth the time and effort you will invest in making it.

Serves four people

For the dough,
3 cups flour
1cup water
1 tsp salt

For the filling,
1/2 pound ground beef
1 onion finely diced
1/2 bunch of parsley finely chopped
salt, black pepper, and red pepper to taste

For the sauces,
1/2 can tomato sauce
1tsp dried mint
1tsp black pepper
4 tbsp corn or vegetable oil
1tsp salt
1-2 cups yogurt
1-2 cloves garlic minced ( optional )

You'll also need;
Large pot filled with 8 cups of water and 2 tsp salt

1-Pour the flour into a large mixing bowl and make a well for the liquid ingredients.Add liquids and then mix by hand until the dough is smooth. If the dough is too sticky it will be difficult to work with. Cover the top and let the dough rest for 20-30 minutes.
2-Mix the ground beef with the minced onion,chopped parsley, salt and pepper and then knead mixture thoroughly.
3-Divide the dough into three equal parts. Form into a ball, then flatten slightly and sprinkle with flour.Roll out dough with floured rolling pin to the thickness of a knife blade. Cur into strips 1.5cm wide and then cut 1.5 cm strips the other direction,creating small squares of dough. (If you like, these squares can be made even smaller. In Turkey, everyone knows that if you can't fit 40 of these little dumplings into one spoon, you'll end up never marrying. Just kidding ! :) )
4-Fill each dough square with the meat filling and then close tightly in whatever shape you desire.One method is to fold the filled square in half and then twist to connect opposing corners, pinching them together. Another is to fold the filled square into a triangle shape and then twist and pinch together two corners of the triangle. Make sure not to overfill the squares or they will open while cooking.
5-Bring 8 cups of water and 2 tsp salt to a boil. Place the dumplings in the boiling water and cook for 10 minutes.You can tell when the dumplings are fully cooked by noting when there is no longer any foam on the top of the boiling water. If you can still see foam, they aren't don yet..This is the most reliable indication of doneness. Depending on the thickness of the dough, it can take more than 10 min. to cook thoroughly.

For the Sauces;
Red sauce, heat tomato sauce, mint, red pepper, black pepper, oil and salt in a small saucepan, mixing well. Cook for 1-2 min.Yogurt sauce, grate garlic into plain yogurt ( Middle Eastern or homemade yogurt work best ) and mix well. Serve by placing dumplings in bowl first, then cover with yogurt, then add red sauce.

Ideally manti is prepared with a group of friends and the preparation becomes as much fun as consumption of the final result. Enjoy !


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