Meteník (Sauerkraut Biscuits)

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vlkolinecOn my recent trip to Slovakia this past October, we visited the UNESCO World Heritage historical village of Vlkolínec. There I got a chance to try something I have never heard of before: a sauerkraut filled thin bread called meteník. This food was also news to my dad, but the lady working the shop confirmed that this in fact is a traditional dish. Sure enough, there are quite a few variations floating around Slovak recipe sites, although I must admit I was disappointed not to find it in any of the three Slovak cookbooks I own. But it’s quite possible it’s hiding in there, just under a different name. When I got back home to the USA, I tried one of the recipes, but it was a straight to trash disaster. This second one, with some of improvisations, turned out much better. Even my wife, who is not a big fan of Slovak “koliba” food, approved!

Ingredients: 2/3 to 1 lb of sauerkraut, half a cup of milk, 1 2/3 cups flour, yeast, teaspoon of sugar, three tablespoons of lard, salt, garlic + oil for topping
Prep Time: about an hour (including rise time), then another 1h15m baking at 350F

yeast washing saurkraut
Dissolve the yeast in a bit of milk and sugar. Then, rinse the sauerkraut well, otherwise the meteník will be too sour. You may also want to chop the sauerkraut into finer pieces.
metenik dough metenik dough metenik dough
Combine the sauerkraut, yeast, milk, flour, two tablespoons of lard, and salt to taste and work together to form dough. Next let rise for about 30 minutes.
metenik baking metenik baking metenik baking
In the meantime, preheat the oven to 350F. Grease a baking pan, and spread the dough into a fairly thin sheet, based on how thick you want the bread to turn out. Bake for about 75 minutes. About 20 minutes from the end, I brushed the top with another tablespoon of lard. I then let it bake more, and finished with 5 minutes under a low broiler.
baked metenik metenik sauerkraut thin bread
While the bread is baking, press 2 cloves of garlic and mix with oil (I used olive) to make the topping. Some people also put bacon on top, but it was served like this, with garlic spread, during our visit to Vlkolínec. Enjoy!