Financially accessible and simple local ingredients and the nimble Zagorje hands which for centuries have been rolling out soft dough and turning Zagorski štrukli (typical pastry of Zagorje) into an excellent appetiser, a filling addition to soups, a tasty main meal, a fast snack or sweet dessert which is simply impossible to go wrong with.
Zagorski štrukli or štruklji, the traditional speciality of Hrvatsko Zagorje, are prepared in every household from ingredients that were easily accessible, and their popularity amongst the local population has spread over the borders to Krapina-Zagorje and Varaždin counties, and so today they are also prepared to present Croatian gastronomy to the world. With the wish that Zagorski štrukli are protected as an indigenous Croatian dish, the skill of their preparation has been listed in the Register of Intangible Cultural Heritage of the Republic of Croatia.
In their honour, since 2009, in the village of Kumrovec, there has been Štruklijada, a special event organised with the purpose of promoting and preserving the traditional method of preparing the štrukli pastry, which year after year is attracting ever more local and foreign guests.
Štrukli can be prepared in two ways, cooked in water and by baking. The basic dough filled with cheese is used in both methods, however, whilst the saltwater cooked štrukli can be sprinkled with fried breadcrumbs or served in aromatic soup, the baked štrukli before being cooked are additionally poured over with cream.
To make štrukli it is necessary to mix a dough made from flour, salt, an egg, lukewarm water, a little vinegar and oil, leave it to rest and then roll it out and fill it with a combination of cow’s milk cheese, salt, eggs and sour cream, with the addition of sugar for sweet štrukli. The stuffed dough is skilfully wound up with the aid of a tablecloth on which the dough was rolled out and then divided into small pillows which are prepared further in the chosen way.
All generations will be delighted with the tasty štrukli, and in whatever way they are prepared, you can’t go wrong!