Soparnik

Soparnik

One more simple, yet worthy recipe which is listed in the Register of Protected Geographical Indications is the soparnik from Poljica, a thin pie of pastry, Swiss chard and onion which for centuries has been traditionally prepared in Dalmatia. Soparnik is a speciality from the region which was once occupied by the Poljica Republic and includes the territory around the mountain of Mosor east of Split. This dish is also known as the Poljica zeljanik, blitvenjak and uljenjak, and it was prepared for numerous festivities and celebrations when it was necessary to feed many guests.

 

Due to the cheap ingredients used in its preparation, soparnik is considered as a fasting dish which is often served on Good Friday, Christmas Eve and on the eve of All Saints’ Day.

 

Soparnik is a savoury dish which is baked on an open hearth called a “komin”. It is placed in a baking tray directly on the heat and sprinkled with ashes from above. The soparnik pastry is mixed from wheat flour, salt, a little olive oil and water. The fresh pastry is then divided into two equal parts and left in a warm place to rise briefly. In this time the filling is prepared from Swiss chard which is cleaned so that the green part of the leaf separates from the stem and is cut into narrow stripes, washed and dried well. Chopped spring onions and parsley are added to the Swiss chard, and then everything is sprinkled with salt and poured over with olive oil. The pastry is then rolled out on a floured board into two thin crusts corresponding to the size of the available baking tray. The lower crust is placed in the tray and the filling of Swiss chard and onion is added. The filled part of the soparnik is then covered with the remaining crust, and the two layers of pastry are joined by twisting the upper edge over the lower, according to the baking tray. Before baking the upper layer is pricked with a fork in several places so that the steam created during baking can escape from the soparnik and all together it is baked for about twenty minutes. The soparnik is ready when it has turned brown, and the ashes are brushed off after it has been removed from the komin. Before being served the soparnik is coated with olive oil to which garlic has been added for extra aroma and sweetness.