Food by VICE

Sweet Potato Frico Burekas Recipe

Crunchy sweet potato pillows showered in crispy cheese.

by Adeena Sussman
Nov 29 2019, 12:00pm

Photo by Dan Perez

Makes: 12
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 2 hour and 20 minutes


12 sheets phyllo dough, defrosted if frozen
2 large sweet potatoes, 2 pounds, scrubbed
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded kashkaval or sharp white cheddar cheese
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup unsalted butter or olive oil

1 cup (1 1/2 ounces) finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese


1. Remove the phyllo from the freezer 2 hours before you start making the burekas (about 30 minutes before you roast the sweet potatoes, if you're doing everything at once; you can also defrost the phyllo in the refrigerator overnight). Heat the oven to 400°F. Prick the sweet potatoes, wrap each individually in foil, arrange on a rimmed baking sheet, and bake until tender, 1 hour. Cool for 30 minutes, then unwrap them and scoop the flesh out of the skins into a medium bowl. Add the kashkaval, salt, and pepper and mash until incorporated (you should have about 2 1/4 cups filling). Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F. Clear and clean a work surface.

2. Unroll the phyllo (it usually comes in a log), remove 12 sheets, then reroll the rest and return to its packaging. Cover the 12 unfurled sheets with a damp towel to keep them from drying out. Brush one sheet with butter, layer another sheet on top, butter the top, then cut the phyllo into long strips about 3 1/2 to 4 inches wide and 12 to 14 inches long; you may have to trim your phyllo a bit. You should be able to get 2 bureka-ready double-strips from each double layer. Center 2 1/2 to 3 tablespoons of the filling about 1/2 inch from the bottom of the strip, then fold the bottom right corner over the filling to meet the left edge and form a triangle. Fold the triangle upward to create another layer of phyllo over the triangle, then continue folding until you have a multilayered triangle. Tuck any edges under, arrange on a large baking sheet, and repeat with the remaining phyllo and filling until you have 12 burekas. Space them out evenly on the baking sheet, brush with butter, then scatter the Parmigiano-Reggiano all over the top and bake until golden brown and crisp, 20 to 22 minutes.

3. Remove from the oven, cool slightly on the baking sheets, and serve warm. Burekas will keep, refrigerated, for up to 3 days, or tightly wrapped and frozen for up to 3 months. Reward (defrost first, if frozen), in a 325°F oven for 8 to 10 minutes.

AUTHOR'S NOTE: This recipe has been reprinted with permission of the author from Sababa: Fresh, Sunny Flavors From My Israeli Kitchen.

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sweet potatoes
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