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CEP 810: Networked Learning Project – Making Potica

on May 21, 2014

Like many Americans, my ancestry is something of a mixed bag. I’m Polish, Irish, Scottish, and Slovenian. Truthfully, I have never felt particularly connected to any of the countries that I just listed. Aside from one great aunt who makes outstanding pierogies, and a grandfather who passed down some extremely select Slovenian vocabulary, I have never learned how to do much of anything associated with my heritage. Therefore, over the course of the next few weeks, I will be teaching myself (with the assistance of YouTube videos and online help forums) how to make potica.

Potica, or povitica, is a Slovenian pastry with several layers, filled with a delectable honey and walnut filling. Typically, potica is eaten at Christmas and Easter. In the past, my family has ordered potica from a small bakery in my maternal grandmother’s hometown of Virginia, Minnesota. If you’re interested in learning the history of potica, or in ordering yourself a loaf of the real thing, check out the bakery’s website here.

So if potica is so delicious, and if my family loves this Slovenian delicacy so much, why haven’t any of my relatives learned to make this heavenly bread? The answer is that making potica is a long, arduous process. After the dough sits for an hour, it must be rolled out paper thin so that it covers an area of about 3 ft by 4 feet. Next, the filling is spread evenly over the dough, and finally, the dough is rolled up tightly and baked. Here is what the final result should look like:

CC licensed (BY NC SA) flickr photo by Rebecca Winzenried
So far, I’ve found the following sites and videos (bulleted below). I will use these as a starting point to determine the ingredient list, the tools necessary, and the proper techniques for rolling the dough.

Over the course of the next few weeks, I will be making a couple of attempts at this recipe. From my research, I have decided to focus on the following points:

  • Dough consistency
  • Rolling technique to flatten and expand dough
  • Rolling up/pinching method
  • Taste (obviously!)

Wish me luck on this tasty endeavor, and don’t forget to come back to check on my progress!


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