Mekitsi Recipe (Bulgarian Fried Dough)

Lastest Updated April 19, 2024
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Mekitsi1

Mekitsi (Мекици) (also known as Mekitsa in singular form) are traditional breakfast in Bulgarian cuisine, often made from simple, readily available ingredients. Mekitsa is also called Bulgarian fried dough, with traditional recipes handed down through generations.

This comprehensive post will help you understand and prepare Mekitsi. Beginning with a definition and history of this Bulgarian fried dough, I then introduce tools and ingredients, along with detailed cooking instructions.

Moreover, I’ve included several practical tips for preparation, suggestions for serving, and effective storage techniques for leftover Mekitsi. I also briefly overview other breakfast dishes from Bulgaria, providing a wider understanding of Bulgarian cuisine.

So, get ready to uncover the secret of Bulgarian Mekitsi!

What Is Mekitsi or Mekitsa?

Mekitsi are traditional Bulgarian fried dough. The dough only requires basic ingredients like eggs, flour, milk, and yeast. While Mekitsi use the same ingredients as Naan (an Indian flatbread), it’s fried, not baked.

Mekitsa was born in the 5th century in what is now Bulgaria. Today, this fried dough is a typical breakfast dish in Bulgarian, Macedonian, and Serbian regions. Mekitsa’s name is derived from the Slavic word “mek,” meaning soft, showcasing this fried dough’s texture.

Mekitsa is available everywhere in Bulgaria. But one of the best places to eat this fried dough is on the mountain lodges. However, you still easily prepare Mekitsi in your home with the necessary tools if you can’t go to Bulgaria.

What Tools to Make Mekitsi or Mekitsa?

To make Mekitsi, you only need several simple tools available in every kitchen, such as a frying pan, kitchen turn, and bowls. Still, each tool has its use, and I’ll explain it all in the equipment list below:

  • Medium-sized frying pan or skillet: To fry Mekitsi.
  • Wooden kitchen turner: To flip Mekitsi when frying and remove it from the pan afterward.
  • Large bowl and fork: To mix ingredients for the Mekitsi dough.
  • Medium-sized bowl: To let the Mekitsi dough rest and rise.
  • Large wooden board or stone slab: To shape Mekitsi before frying.
  • Large plate: To place Mekitsi after frying.
  • Kitchen paper: To absorb the excess oil from fried Mekitsi.
Mekitsi Tools1
Mekitsi Tools2

Besides tools, a perfect Mekitsa also requires certain ingredients.

Which Ingredients Are Necessary for Mekitsi or Mekitsa?

Mekitsi Ingredients

Like tools, the necessary ingredients for Mekitsi are easy to find: flour, yeast, eggs, etc. Still, I’ve included some notices in each component so you can choose the best options:

  • Flour: All-purpose flour is the most suitable for Mekitsi.
  • Dry yeast: To make the Mekitsi puffy.
  • Eggs: Only use fresh eggs for the best result.
  • Warm milk: To activate the dry yeast more easily. Or use skim milk to lighten your Mekitsi.
  • Oil: Sunflower oil is the most common for Bulgarian dishes. But feel free to use other frying oil.
  • Salt and sugar: To season your Mekitsi.

When you have all the necessary tools and ingredients, it’s time to start making Mekitsi.

How to Make Mekitsi or Mekitsa?

To make Mekitsi, you must go through 3 main steps: Prepare the Mekitsa dough, shape the dough into portions, and fry them. I’ve described each step in detail, so you’ll easily replicate it.

Step 1: Prepare the Mekitsa Dough

Combine half the flour with dry yeast, sugar, and salt in a large mixing bowl until well mixed.

Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare1
Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare2

Make a well in the mixture and pour in warm milk, oil, and eggs. Use your fork to mix these ingredients until smooth.

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Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare4

Add the remaining flour and mix until fully combined. The final Mekitsa dough will be smooth and slightly sticky.

Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare5
Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare6

Coat the medium-sized mixing bowl with oil and transfer the Mekitsa dough into it.

Turn the dough in the bowl several times and let it rest for 10-15 minutes to rise.

Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare7

Step 2: Shape the Mekitsi

Smear the oil over the wooden board or stone slab. Also, coat your hands with oil.

Pull several small pieces from the dough and shape them into balls with oiled hands. Place these balls on the oiled wooden board.

Mekitsi Step 2 Shape1

Take one of the dough balls and slightly flatten it to form a round disc with thicker edges and a thin middle, just like the image.

Mekitsi Step 2 Shape2

Step 3: Fry the Mekitsi

Heat your frying pan or skillet at medium heat. Pour enough vegetable oil to cover the pan’s bottom.

Mekitsi Step 3 Fry1

Place the Mekitsa pieces into the pan and fry until both sides puff up and turn golden brown (about 2-3 minutes per side).

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Mekitsi Step 3 Fry3

Move the fried Mekitsa into a plate lined with paper towels to remove excess oil.

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Continue shaping and frying Mekitsi until you run out of dough. Serve Mekitsi warm.

Mekitsi Step 3 Fry5

Here are all the basic steps to make Mekitsi, but there are more. I’ve included different tips to elevate your fried dough to a new height.

Are There Any Tips for Making Mekitsi or Mekitsa?

While making Mekitsi is quite easy, there are also several tips to perfect it, especially when preparing the dough. Other steps like frying also have something to notice.

  • A kitchen mixer or a bread maker will make mixing the dough easier.
  • The resting step makes Mekitsa dough fluffier and easier to handle, so don’t skip it.
  • Prepare the dough beforehand and let it rest overnight to save time when making Mekitsi for breakfast. Refrigerate your dough in the oiled bowl covered with stretch film.
  • Since Mekitsa dough is sticky, coating your hands and the second mixing bowl will help your work easier.
  • Medium temperatures are the best option. That way, your Mekitsi will be evenly cooked on both the outside and inside.
  • Feel free to fry several Mekitsa pieces at once if your pan or skillet is large enough.

Fried Mekitsa is already delicious on its own, but when served in the right way, this Bulgarian fried dough will become tastier.

Mekitsi Tips

How to Serve Mekitsi or Mekitsa?

There are two ways to serve Mekitsi: sweet and savory styles. Each style comes with different pairings with Mekitsi.

To serve Mekitsi in a sweet way, honey, maple syrup, or jam like strawberry jam is the best companion. Or simpler, dust Mekitsi with powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar.

As for the savory style, cheese such as Bulgarian briny cheese or feta cheese is the popular option. Greek yogurt is also a nice choice to add moisture and sourness to your Mekitsi. Some even use Mekitsi to wrap their hotdog.

Sometimes, you’ll make too many Mekitsa portions and can’t finish them all in one way. When that happens, the below storing method will help you.

How to Store Mekitsi or Mekitsa?

The easiest way to store Mekitsi is by refrigerating it in an airtight container. This way, it’ll last for 2 days. Leaving Mekitsi at room temperature is also a decent method, but you must eat it within 1 day.

A small note: Mekitsa isn’t suitable for freezing, so avoid this method.

Now that I’ve shown you the ins and outs of storing Mekitsi‎, let’s look at the larger culinary landscape of Bulgaria, especially its breakfast aspect.

Does Bulgaria Have Other Breakfast Dishes?

Besides crispy Mekitsi, Bulgaria has various dishes suitable for breakfast, from sweet to savory. Let’s follow me to explore other morning options in Bulgaria:

  • Tikvenik (Bulgarian pumpkin strudel): Tikvenik is among other Bulgarian phyllo pastry pies. The main ingredient for this pumpkin strudel is pumpkin. The sweeter the pumpkin, the tastier your Tikvenik.
  • Banitsa (Bulgarian cheese pie): Like Tikvenik, Banista also uses phyllo pastry. However, the filling is more savory, with the main component of white brine cheese and Bulgarian yogurt.

Mekitsi Will Be a Perfect Breakfast for Your Family

Mekitsa, the humble Bulgarian fried dough, truly testifies to the beauty of simplicity in cooking. Through this piece, I hope you’ve felt the warmth of Bulgarian cuisine. Mekitsa is just a simple dish, but it’ll take you to the rich culinary heritage of Bulgaria.

Now, please like and share this Mekitsa recipe on your social media if it has ignited a newfound interest in Bulgarian cuisine. And remember to express your thoughts and cooking experiences in the comment section!

Mekitsi Recipe

Bulgarian Fried Dough or Mekitsi (Мекици) Recipe

Mekitsa, or Bulgarian fried dough, is a breakfast and sweet snack loved by kids and adults. This instruction will help you create the crispy, fluffy, irresistible Bulgarian fried dish!
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Course: Breakfast, Brunch
Cuisine: Bulgarian
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 20 servings
Calories: 200kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 pound (500 grams) of all-purpose flour
  • 0.25 ounces (7 grams) of dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 0.85 cup (200ml) warm milk
  • 3 tablespoons (40 ml) oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1-1.5 cups of oil for shaping and frying Mekitsi

Instructions 

  • Combine half the flour with dry yeast, salt, and sugar in a large mixing bowl.
    Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare1
  • Mix well.
    Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare2
  • Create a well in the middle. Pour in milk, 3 tablespoons of oil, and eggs.
    Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare3
  • Then, mix these ingredients with your fork.
    Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare4
  • When the mixture becomes smooth, add the remaining flour.
    Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare5
  • And then mix again until the dough turns smooth and slightly sticky.
    Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare6
  • Transfer the dough to another mixing bowl coated with oil.
  • Turn the dough in the bowl a few times and leave it there for 10-15 minutes to rise.
    Mekitsi Step 1 Prepare7
  • Coat your hands and a wooden board or stone slab with oil.
  • Tear the dough into several small pieces and form them into balls. Place these balls on the oiled board.
    Mekitsi Step 2 Shape1
  • Flatten these balls into round discs. Their middle part should be thin, while the edges are thicker.
    Mekitsi Step 2 Shape2
  • Place your frying pan or skillet over a medium flame. Cover the pan bottom with the remaining oil.
    Mekitsi Step 3 Fry1
  • When the oil is hot enough, place your Mekitsa into the pan.
    Mekitsi Step 3 Fry2
  • Fry each side for 2-3 minutes until golden brown.
    Mekitsi Step 3 Fry3
  • Transfer the fried Mekitsa to a plate covered with paper towels.
    Mekitsi Step 3 Fry4
  • Keep shaping and frying Mekitsi until you use up the dough.
    Mekitsi Step 3 Fry5

Notes

  • The cooking time above is dedicated to 20 Mekitsa pieces.
  • Feel free to use a kitchen mixer or bread maker to help mix the dough.
  • Resting will make your Mekitsa dough fluffier and easier to handle at later steps.
  • Make the dough in advance and let it rest overnight to make Mekitsi for breakfast. This way will help you save more time.
  • Make sure to coat your hands and the second bowl with oil since the
  • Mekitsi dough is sticky. Medium heat is the best for frying Mekitsi.
  • Feel free to fry several Mekitsa pieces at once if your pan is large enough. However, keep them from overlapping with each other to avoid sogginess.

Nutrition

Calories: 200kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 18mg | Sodium: 127mg | Potassium: 25mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 40IU | Vitamin C: 0.001mg | Calcium: 28mg | Iron: 1mg
Mia Dimitrova

Mia Dimitrova

Content Writer

Expertise

Home Cooking, Meal Planning, Food Styling, Food Photography, Culinary Storytelling, Cooking-video Maker, European Food Content Creator, Bulgarian Food Evaluation Expert

Education

Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”

  • Program: Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography
  • Focus: Captured the soul of Bulgarian and European dishes, emphasizing the interrelation between visual appeal and culinary history.
    Completed a thesis titled “Bulgaria on a Plate: A Photographic Journey through our Gastronomic Legacy.”

European Culinary Arts Academy

  • Program: Certified Course in Food Styling
  • Focus: Gained expertise in presenting dishes from Bulgaria and beyond, understanding the intricacies of European culinary aesthetics.

Maria Dimitrova, or Mia, is a Contributing Writer from Sofia, Bulgaria. Her work beautifully intertwines the rich flavors of Bulgarian and European dishes with their visual storytelling, capturing the soul of each cuisine. Through engaging content and stunning photography, Maria explores the intricate relationship between food’s aesthetic appeal and cultural history.

Specializing in home cooking, food styling, and photography, she brings European culinary traditions to life, offering a unique glimpse into Bulgaria’s gastronomic heritage. Maria’s expertise highlights her deep appreciation for culinary art and invites her audience to embark on a flavorful journey through Europe’s diverse food landscape.

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