At the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century people, in the rural parts of Croatia, such as Zagorje, Lika and Dalmatinska Zagora didn’t have much and were very poor. I would like to share with you an old and a new recipe for the bread they usually made back than. The name of the bread is Proja or Kuruza.
250 – 500g polenta
a pinch of salt
2 spoons of oil or lard
1-1.5 dcl of warm water
Preheat the oven at 180-200°C. Put all the ingredients into a bowl and mix them well first with a wooden spoon and then with hands. Take the casserole pot and cover it with the baking paper. Grease the paper and add the mixture. It should be about 2 cm thick. Shake it and sprinkle with some water.
Bake it for 20 minutes. When it’s done, take it out and cover it with the cotton cloth and leave it for half an hour. It’s the best when it’s still warm. You can serve it cut into small slices or even better just break it with the hands.
Our ancestors used to make this bread so that it would last for a several days. After a day or two this bread hardens and it’s not so easy to eat it.
Nowadays we look at it as especial type of bread, made only for the very special occasions.
NEW RECIPE for PROJA (PROJARA)
1.5 cup polenta
2-3 cups of white flour
1.5 cup of oil
2 cups of yogurt
2 backing powders (22 grams)
a pinch of salt
2 spoons of fresh cheese
a handful of chard or spinach (cut into smaller pieces)
2 spoons of pork cracklings
Preheat the oven at the 200°C. Put the ingredients into the bowl and mix everything with a wooden spoon. Add either fresh cheese, chard, spinach or pork cracklings and mix again. Take the casserole pot and cover it with the baking paper. Grease the paper and add the mixture. It should be about 2 cm thick and let it rest for half an hour. Bake it for 30 to 35 minutes. When it’s done, take it out of the oven, and grease the top of the bread with the butter. Cover it with cotton cloth and let it all rest for half an hour. Before serving cut it into small pieces.