Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Presnac - Savory Serbian Cheese & Spinach Pie

Presnac (pronounced  preh-SNATZ) is a savory cheese dish of Serbian origin.  This can be made by itself, with or with out spinach or any green vegetable, or layered between a dough or phyllo dough.  A similar dish is called  ‘Zeljanica’, a cheese and spinach pie, when encrusted in pastry or phyllo leaves.

I like it without the pastry.  Lower in carbs!.  It makes a great appetizer, brunch, or side dish.
This particular version is mine. The addition of ricotta gives it a velvety richness.  It can be made using flour or cornmeal, or the combination of both.  I used fresh spinach leaves, just chopping them slightly.  Of course, frozen can be used or left out entirely.  I serve it over a layer of tomato sauce or marinara….fantastic!


¼ lb fresh spinach (3 large handfuls out of a large 1lb bag) chopped
6 eggs, separated
1 lb container of cottage cheese, small curd
½ lb ricotta cheese
¾ cup cornmeal
½ lb shredded muenster or brick cheese
1 stick melted butter, reserve 2 T
1 tsp garlic salt, I prefer Lawry’s
½ tsp white pepper
Marinara sauce for plating, optional

Pre-heat oven to 350 F degrees.
Beat egg whites in separate bowl and set aside.
Beat yolks, cheeses, melted butter, cornmeal and pour into beaten egg whites.  Gently fold so as not to deflate egg whites.  Add garlic salt and pour into a greased 9x12 pan.  Sprinkle the reserved 2T of melted butter over the top (esp since I used fresh spinach)  Bake for 1 hour.  Cool in pan.

                          Cut in squares and serve.  Or cut and serve it over a puddle of marinara sauce.


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  2. I'll be checking out your blog occasionally--baking your pogača right now and have high hopes. Grandfather from Croatia as is grandmother but I was born here and no nothing of my culture...but I love to cook and only now at 60 am I starting to explore Serbian, Croatian etc cuisine.

    I tend to follow recipes slavishly...at first, but eventually adapt them to my own bent...trying to take a good, solid country- style, provincial cuisine and give it an edge of...I dunno...something 'classier' but will never know till I try the basics,

    Made sevapcici this morning, 15 sausages left in the freezer right now!