Mlinci (pasta tatters) is a traditional Croatian dish. It is a unique thin dried flatbread soaked in boiled water and fried in fat from the roasted poultry (usually turkey). Turkey with mlinci is a renowned Croatian cuisine specialty. My way of making this dish lighter is to roast mlinci in mixture of soy sauce and olive oil rather than in poultry fat. That way mlinci are suitable even for vegetarians as they can also be prepared with seitan or tofu. Mlinci can be combined with various dishes and salads. Recently I have prepared the dinner that was an interesting fusion of Croatian, Indian (Ayurvedic) and Caribbean cuisine – Roasted turkey tights marinated in Indian spices, roasted sweet potato in Caribbean spices, Indian chickpeas salad with mango and Ayurvedic beet raita.
If you would like to try making your own mlinci pasta it is rather easy.
2 ½ cups all purpose flour1 tbls olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tbls brown sugar
½ to ¾ cup water
In a bowl mix all ingredients gradually adding water, only as much as needed to form bread-like dough. Live it covered with kitchen cloth to „rest“ for half an hour.
Divide the dough in 3 or 4 equal pieces and roll them out into rounds as for noodles (but not too thin). Bake in oven at 325F on the lowest rack. You will have to turn them once.
They need to have brown spots and be completely hard and dry.
Cool mlinci and than break them into pieces.
Now, this is the main part of preparing the mlinci. They need to be prepared like Italian „al dente“pasta – not too soft. Put broken mlinci into a big bowl and pour enough salted hot water over them. Live it for few minutes to soften. Frequently chek mlinci – don’t live them too long. Drain mlinci well. They need to be drained really well because remained water could made them too soft while you will be roasting them. Put mlinci into a hot fat from the roasted poultry, preferably into the same dish where you roasted the poultry. Mix mlinci well with fat and taste if it needs more salt. Roast mlinci in the oven at 400F for 20 minutes. Serve hot.
With their taste and texture mlinci are imitating the meat with which they are prepared. If you notice that your guests are eating more mlinci that meat than you know that you have succeeded! Keep this in mind while you are preparing them.