MufletaRelated: Africa, dairy, desserts & sweets, Israel & Middle East, kid-friendly, pareve, Passover, vegetarian
Making mufleta involves a unique Moroccan grandmothers’ technique that has been practiced for centuries: the first pancake is fried on both sides, and subsequent pancakes are added on top of the first one in the pan, so that they are cooked all at once in a towering stack of a dozen, or even twenty, pancakes that’s flipped back and forth as each is added. It’s a great way to keep the pancakes warm. I mustered the courage to cook a stack of eight, but beyond that was a leap of faith. You can also cook and serve the pancakes one at a time, as my Israeli friend Shoshi, whose mother is Moroccan, does—as long as you serve them hot, fresh off the skillet or griddle, drenched or just drizzled with melted butter and honey. This recipe is easily halved.
- 2¼ pounds flour
- 1 heaping tablespoon sugar
- 1½ teaspoons salt
- 1 tablespoon (1⅓ ounces) active dry yeast
- 3 to 3¼ cups lukewarm water
- ½ cup vegetable oil (for flattening the pancakes), plus some for coating dough in bowl
- About ½ cup melted butter for serving
- About ½ cup honey for serving
- Mix the flour, salt, sugar and yeast in a mixer bowl and stir together with a spatula. Attach the dough hook attachment and add 3 cups of water. Mix for 2 minutes on a low speed. If dough looks too dry, add the remaining ¼ cup water gradually, and continue kneading for another 8 minutes. The dough will be soft, supple and not sticky. It should pull nicely away from the sides of the bowl to form into a smooth, beautiful dough. Coat with a light layer of oil, cover the mixer bowl with plastic wrap and let rise for 40 minutes on the counter.
- Once the dough has risen, break off balls of dough, about the size of golf balls. You can form one ball at a time, while keeping the rest of the dough covered. Brush a smooth surface, such as a countertop or cutting board, with a little of the oil, dab your fingertips with oil and press the dough with your oiled fingertips on the surface into a very thin, flat pancake approximately 7 to 8 inches across.
- Preheat a nonstick or a cast iron skillet over medium heat. If using a cast iron skillet, turn heat down to medium-low when ready to cook. Lift the pancake from the edges with your fingertips with both hands and lay it flat in the skillet. Cook for less than a minute, or until golden, and flip and cook for less than a minute, or until golden, on the other side.
- To prepare a stack of mufletas, while the first pancake is cooking, flatten another ball of dough into a 7 to 8-inch flat round. Lay the second pancake on top of the first pancake once it is cooked on both sides, and flip with a spatula and cook the second pancake, for less than a minute, or until golden. Flatten a third pancake and lay over the top, flip, cook and repeat. Only the first pancake is cooked on both sides. The rest of the batch cooks only on one side each.
- Continue until you complete a stack. I was comfortable with a stack of 8 pancakes before I started a new batch of 8. Some cooks cook a dozen or even 20 at a time using this method. When you start another stack, again, cook the first pancake on both sides and the rest as directed above.
- If you aren’t comfortable with cooking a stack of pancakes as directed below, prepare the balls of dough and cook each pancake separately, cooking on both sides, as instructed above for the first one.
- Serve mufletas immediately, warm, drenched or drizzled with melted butter and honey.