For a burekaphile like myself, the appearance of a new burek is an event that demands attention. So when reader Rob Starobin chimed in with news of a new burek in the far western reaches of Kingsbridge Heights, I knew I needed to check it out.
'burek' on Serious Eats
Tony & Tina's produces a long-celebrated burek on Arthur Avenue, but Giovanni's supplants it as the top phyllo snack in the neighborhood.
Don't be fooled because it's cut into small slices. This burek slice from Bosnian treasure trove Ukus is freaking enormous, one quarter of a 9-inch round. And it's $5 for what's really an afternoon snack for two to three people.
Four flavors ($4 a piece) are available daily. Ground beef and cheese are the traditional options, but there's also the more modern apple and recently introduced jumari varieties.
While Albanian sit-downs, common over in Belmont, are absent, there a few markets stocked with imported goods. And the European Meat Market is one of the most rewarding.
[Photograph: Max Falkowitz] Consider this a template recipe for making Turkish burek, which come in all shape and filling combinations. Use high-starch russet potatoes for a creamy mash, and, if you can find it, young kasseri cheese (you can substitute...
You could spend months of hungover mornings sampling the burek offerings of Queens, which hail from Turkey, the Balkans, and beyond, but Djerdan's should be on your short list. Their traditional Bosnian burek are made with yufka, a flatbread of Turkish extraction layered like phyllo but with more satisfying heft. Your choice of fillings—meat and potato, spinach and farmer's cheese, or farmer's cheese alone—are pleasantly direct, unmarred by dalliances that would overwhelm the crackly crisp pastry.