These flaky, buttery pancakes (meloui) are an absolute staple as part of a Moroccan breakfast. If you've ever traveled to Morocco, you'll have ripped their delicious layers and covered them with soft cheese, homemade jams and a crispy fried egg. simply divine when sat on a sunny terrace with a pot of steaming coffee and views over the Rif Mountains.
Made using semolina flour, meloui are shaped by rolling a folded strip of dough up like a rug, and then flattening the upright coil into a circle. They can be a bit tricky to master straight away, but you'll soon get the hang of rolling them in melted butter. If you're unsure this video is super to get an idea and to see how meloui are traditionally made.They can be quite time-consuming to make so sometimes I'll make a batch and leave them in the fridge overnight, ready to be heated in the microwave the following morning.
INGREDIENTS (makes 20 pancakes)
250g plain flour
360g of fine semolina flour
2 tsp sugar
2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp yeast
350ml warm water
FOLDING AND COOKING
65 ml vegetable oil
65g cup very soft butter
MAKING THE DOUGH
Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
Add the warm water, and mix to form a dough. Add more water if necessary to make a dough that is soft and easy to knead, but not sticky. If the dough is too sticky to handle, add a little flour one tablespoon at a time.
Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and knead by hand for 10 minutes, until the dough is very smooth and elastic.
Oil a large tray. Divide the dough into approximately 16 smooth balls (the size of small plums) and place them on the oiled tray, leaving ample space between balls. Oil the top of the dough balls, cover loosely with a piece of plastic wrap and leave to rest for 20 to 30 minutes.
Flatten the dough to remove any air bubbles, sprinkle it with semolina, and roll it up like a rug into a coil. Pinch the loose end of the dough onto the coil to seal it, and stand the roll upright on an oiled try. Coat the folded dough with more oil, cover loosely with plastic wrap and repeat the folding process with the remaining balls of dough.
Dot the strip of dough with more butter, sprinkle on a little more semolina and then fold again into thirds like a letter. You'll be left with a very narrow strip of dough.
Dot the dough butter and sprinkle with a little semolina. Fold the dough into thirds as you would for a letter - fold the top third down into the center, and then fold the bottom up to cover the first fold.
Take a ball of dough and flatten it on a large, oiled work surface. Use oiled hands to stretch and flatten the dough as much as possible into a large circle.
Preheat a pan or griddle over medium heat. In the order in which you folded them, take a coil of dough and flatten it into a circle about 1/8 inch thick. Try to flatten it evenly from the center outward so you can see the coiled effect.
Transfer the flattened dough to the pan, and cook for about 5 minutes, turning several times, until the meloui is golden brown and the dough is cooked thoroughly.
Serve meloui with jam, honey, fried eggs and soft cheese (you may think the days of Dairylea triangles in school pack lunches where behind you, but oh no)