Yes, yes, yes...Flaounes will be a'cookin' here at our home....those heavenly-sent golden pillows full of love, eggs and cheese that Cypriots around the world only make for Pascha....mmmmm!!
Come with me to the kitchen where Man of House is getting ready to create this year's masterpieces...
Woman of House: Well hello there Man of House...are you ready to take us on a tour of your latest culinary skills?
Man of House: Why, yes I am...however, I must point out to you that some ingredients or proportions are family secrets....so I cannot reveal too much about what I do...suffice it to say that the results will be wonderful! Let's begin...
WH: So what is in this large metal bowl?
MH: This is a combination of several cheeses....I spent several days drying them and then grating them.
WH: Can you divulge the cheeses?
MH: Some kefalotiri, kefalograviera, mizithra, haloumi, and feta. The proportions are a family secret.
WH: Ah....I see. These are all Greek cheeses...yes?
MH: Yes...and as you know, haloumi is from my father's island Cyprus.
WH: Now what is going to happen?
MH: I am using a colander to make dry mint smaller and to get any twigs out of it.
MH: Into the cheese mix I put in the mint and several eggs.
WH: How many eggs? How much mint?
MH: I don't count the eggs...I just put enough in to make the mixture moist. And as for the mint....I would guess about a cup goes in...I don't measure that either.
WH: My oh my....that's a lot of eggs!
MH: Hey! Since these are only made and eaten at Pascha, who cares how many eggs? This is a celebration!
WH: Sorry...sheesh...never come between a Cypriot man and his flaounes! Moving right along...what is next?
MH: Another secret ingredient...and don't ask what it is...I won't tell you, that's what makes it a secret.
WH: Would I do that?
MH: Oh yes you would...you are always asking about things that don't concern you...and then when you don't get an answer you like - or any answer at all - you make one up...and a whole story to go with your "answer"...
WH: Let's leave personalities out of this....just tell us what you are doing now...
MH: I am breaking up an egg which I will use to brush the top of the flaounes.
WH: This reminds me...I am really glad that I have had my "boob-squish" this year...I really hate getting those things but when your doctor says....
MH: (clearing throat)....now I use a fork to break the yolk and get it all creamy
MH: Now before you go off on another tangent I will continue by getting a big bowl of dough that I had prepared several hours ago.
WH: For those of you who do not know, Man of House bakes the family bread too...so this was just "par for the course" for him...
MH: I punch down the dough and get it ready...
WH: Ready for what?
MH: A date...what do you think? Why, oh why do you keep interrupting me...you do it all the time!
WH: What have I told you about personalities? Please continue...
MH: Then I flour my working area and my rolling pin, and get a piece of dough. I roll it out...
MH: And then I put several spoonfuls of my cheese mix on top. I make sure I get the goodness close to the edge of the dough.
WH: It appears that Man of House is dabbing some water along the edges of the dough and is now folding it into a long pillow-like structure...
MH: A fork is then used to further close the "pillow", it is moved to a tray with other flaounes, and brushed on top with egg.
MH: Then sesame seeds are sprinkled on top
MH: When the tray is full, then I pop them into the oven....
WH: You mean an oven is not just for storage???
MH: (giving Woman of House a smoldering look)...no.
WH: Um....are you crying now?
MH: No, I just had something in my eye....where was I...oh yes, and when they are done I take them out and...voila! There you are!
WH: And there you have it...one more delectable, delicious goody for our Paschal celebrations!! Till next time....Kali Anastasi! (May you have a Good Resurrection Service / Celebration!)