Aubergine Byurek Recipe from Bulgaria with Cheese and Breadcrumbs

Aubergine Byurek

Aubergine Byurek Recipe from Bulgaria with Cheese and Breadcrumbs
Region / culture: Bulgaria | Preparation time: 30 minutes | Cooking time: 20 minutes | Servings: 4


Aubergine Byurek
Aubergine Byurek

Aubergine Byurek is a delightful and savory dish that originates from the vibrant culinary traditions of the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern regions. This recipe transforms the humble aubergine into a mouth-watering meal with its rich filling of feta cheese, herbs, and eggs, all encased in a crispy breadcrumb coating. Perfect for vegetarians and cheese lovers alike, Aubergine Byurek is a versatile dish that can be served as a main course, appetizer, or side dish.


The origins of Byurek can be traced back to the Ottoman Empire, where it was a popular pastry made with thin layers of dough known as yufka, filled with various ingredients such as cheese, spinach, or meat. Over time, this culinary concept spread across the region, with each culture adding its unique twist. The Aubergine Byurek is a modern variation that highlights the aubergine, a staple ingredient in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisines, known for its ability to absorb flavors and provide a meaty texture.


How to prepare

  1. Wash and dry the aubergines. Slice them to a thickness of 0.5 cm. Sprinkle with salt and set aside for 10–15 minutes.
  2. Drain any juices that are released from the aubergine slices.
  3. Coat each slice in flour and fry for approximately 3–4 minutes on each side.
  4. Prepare the filling by combining 4 eggs, cheese, parsley, and pepper.
  5. Take half of the slices and place a tablespoon of the filling mixture on top. Cover with the remaining slices.
  6. Dip the slices in the remaining 2 beaten eggs, then coat them in breadcrumbs. Fry for about 2–3 minutes on each side.


  • There are several ways to vary this recipe to suit different tastes or dietary requirements:
  • Vegan version: Substitute the eggs and feta cheese with vegan alternatives such as tofu for the filling and a flaxseed mixture for the egg wash.
  • Meat lovers: Add cooked ground lamb or beef to the cheese mixture for an extra hearty filling.
  • Spice it up: Incorporate spices such as cumin, paprika, or chili flakes into the filling for a flavorful twist.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

To ensure your Aubergine Byurek turns out perfectly, consider the following tips:

- Salt the aubergine slices before cooking to draw out moisture. This step is crucial for achieving a less soggy, more concentrated flavor.

- When frying the aubergine, use medium heat to avoid burning the flour coating while ensuring the slices are cooked through.

- For a lighter version, you can bake the breaded aubergine slices in the oven at 200°C (392°F) until golden brown, instead of frying.

- Feel free to adjust the filling by adding different herbs or even some spices for an extra flavor kick.

Serving Suggestions

Aubergine Byurek can be served hot or at room temperature, making it a versatile dish for any occasion. It pairs beautifully with a light salad, yogurt sauce, or a tangy tomato salsa to balance the richness of the cheese and eggs.

Cooking Techniques

The key techniques in this recipe involve salting and frying the aubergine slices to achieve the perfect texture and flavor. Additionally, the process of breading with flour, eggs, and breadcrumbs before frying adds a delightful crunch that contrasts beautifully with the soft, savory filling.

Ingredient Substitutions

Aubergines can be substituted with zucchini for a different but equally delicious version of the dish.

- Ricotta or cottage cheese can be used instead of feta for a milder flavor.

- For a gluten-free version, use almond flour and gluten-free breadcrumbs.

Make Ahead Tips

Aubergine Byurek can be prepared ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator before the final frying step. Simply assemble the aubergine sandwiches with the filling and keep them chilled until ready to bread and fry.

Presentation Ideas

Serve Aubergine Byurek on a platter garnished with fresh herbs and a drizzle of olive oil for an elegant presentation. A side of lemon wedges adds a refreshing touch that complements the rich flavors of the dish.

Pairing Recommendations

Aubergine Byurek pairs wonderfully with a crisp white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc or a light-bodied red wine like Pinot Noir. For a non-alcoholic option, a sparkling lemonade or mint-infused water complements the dish beautifully.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Leftover Aubergine Byurek can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in the oven at 180°C (356°F) until warmed through and crispy.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of Aubergine Byurek contains approximately 350 calories. The majority of these calories come from the fats and carbohydrates in the dish.


Each serving of Aubergine Byurek contains approximately 35 grams of carbohydrates. The primary sources of carbohydrates in this dish are the aubergines, flour, and breadcrumbs, which provide energy for the body.


This dish is relatively high in fats, with each serving containing about 20 grams of fat, mainly from the vegetable oil used for frying, the feta cheese, and the eggs. Using a lighter cheese and minimizing the oil by baking instead of frying can reduce the fat content.


Aubergine Byurek is a good source of protein, with each serving providing approximately 15 grams. The protein comes from the eggs and feta cheese, making it a satisfying meal option.

Vitamins and minerals

Aubergine Byurek is rich in vitamins and minerals, particularly from the aubergines, which are a good source of fiber, vitamins B1 and B6, and potassium. The parsley and dill also contribute significant amounts of Vitamin K, Vitamin C, and iron.


This recipe contains common allergens such as eggs, gluten (from flour and breadcrumbs), and dairy (from feta cheese). Individuals with allergies to these ingredients should exercise caution.


Aubergine Byurek is a nutritious dish that provides a balanced mix of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats, along with essential vitamins and minerals. However, it is relatively high in calories and contains common allergens, so it should be enjoyed in moderation as part of a balanced diet.


Aubergine Byurek is a flavorful and satisfying dish that showcases the versatility of aubergines. With its rich filling, crispy coating, and delightful blend of herbs and spices, it's sure to be a hit with family and friends. Whether you stick to the traditional recipe or experiment with variations, Aubergine Byurek is a delicious way to enjoy the unique tastes of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine.

How did I get this recipe?

The first time I saw this recipe, I knew it was something I had to try. It was a windy day in Istanbul, and I was wandering through the bustling markets, my senses overwhelmed by the sights and smells of the city. As I passed by a small food stall, I caught a whiff of something delicious cooking on the grill. Curious, I approached the stall and saw a woman standing behind a large griddle, expertly flipping thin sheets of dough filled with a fragrant mixture of aubergine, herbs, and spices.

I watched as she skillfully assembled the layers of dough and filling, creating a beautiful and intricate pattern. The aroma wafted through the air, tantalizing my taste buds and stirring a deep sense of nostalgia within me. I had eaten similar dishes in my youth, prepared by my own grandmother in our humble kitchen in the countryside.

As I stood there, mesmerized by the woman's deft movements, she caught my eye and smiled warmly. Sensing my interest, she beckoned me closer and offered me a sample of her creation. I took a bite, and the flavors exploded in my mouth – smoky aubergine, savory herbs, and a hint of sweetness from the dough. It was unlike anything I had ever tasted before, and I knew I had to learn how to make it myself.

I struck up a conversation with the woman, who introduced herself as Fatma. She explained that the dish was called Aubergine Byurek, a traditional Turkish recipe passed down through generations in her family. She graciously offered to teach me how to make it, inviting me to her home the following day.

The next morning, I found myself standing in Fatma's kitchen, surrounded by the intoxicating aroma of spices and herbs. She handed me a bowl of dough and instructed me to roll it out into thin sheets, just like she had done at the market. I struggled at first, my hands clumsy and unpracticed, but Fatma's patient guidance soon had me shaping the dough with ease.

As we worked together, she shared stories of her own grandmother, a formidable woman who had taught her the secrets of Turkish cuisine. I listened intently, absorbing every word and technique she imparted. By the time we had finished assembling the Byurek, I felt a deep connection to Fatma and her culinary heritage.

The Byurek emerged from the oven golden and fragrant, its layers crisp and flaky. Fatma cut it into generous portions and we sat down to enjoy our creation together. As we ate, I felt a sense of gratitude wash over me – for the opportunity to learn from such a skilled cook, for the bond we had formed over a shared love of food, and for the delicious Byurek that now held a special place in my heart.

From that day on, Aubergine Byurek became a beloved dish in my own kitchen. I made it for family gatherings, potlucks with friends, and even just for myself on quiet nights at home. Each time I rolled out the dough, layered the filling, and savored the final product, I felt a connection to Fatma and the rich culinary traditions of Turkey.

Years passed, and I continued to refine my technique, experimenting with different herbs, spices, and fillings. I added my own twist to the recipe, incorporating flavors from my own childhood and travels. But no matter how much the dish evolved, the essence of Aubergine Byurek remained the same – a tribute to the past, a celebration of the present, and a promise of delicious meals yet to come.

As I write this, I am reminded of the power of food to bring people together, to forge bonds that transcend language and culture. I am grateful for Fatma and the gift she gave me that windy day in Istanbul – not just a recipe, but a connection to a culinary legacy that spans generations. And as I pass this recipe on to you, my dear grandchild, I hope you will find as much joy and fulfillment in making Aubergine Byurek as I have.


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