Lalagia: Traditional Fried Dough Recipe From Mani

 Lalagia is a traditional fried dough recipe that comes straight from Mani. Mani is the central peninsula of the three which extends southwards from the Peloponnese in southern Greece. Lalagia (λαλάγγια) is a traditional snack that you can find in every house in Mani during big celebrations. Although people in Mani make lalagia for Christmas, my mother has the tradition of making them on Epiphany's Eve. 

We have a small tradition before making the lalagia. My mother makes a lalagi in the form of a cross and before making these fried doughs, she places the cross in the oil. If the cross follows a clockwise course, it means that the new year will be blessed. I know it is a silly tradition, but we always like to do it.

Nowadays, you can find lalagia any time of the year at any oven store in Mani and Laconia. However, nothing compares to the homemade version of this. There are various versions of this recipe. For instance, my mother adds golden raisins to lalagia something that gives them a delicious sweet taste. I suggest you try this version as well. 

For this traditional lalagia recipe you need only flour, olive oil, dry yeast, salt, a little lukewarm water, and oil for frying. 

Lalagia: Traditional Fried Dough Recipe From Mani

Lalagia Recipe - Ingredients

  • 1 kg of flour
  • 250 ml of olive oil
  • 9 g of dried yeast
  • 200 g of golden raisin (optional)
  • Little lukewarm water
  • Salt
  • Oil for frying

Lalagia Recipe - How to Make

  1. Take a large bowl and add the flour and oil. 
  2. Knead the mixture with your hands until ingredients are unified.  
  3. Add salt and knead again.
  4. Dissolve the yeast in a glass of wine water, add it to the flour mixture and knead again.
  5. Add the raisins making sure they are evenly spread across the dough (optional).
  6. Add lukewarm water and knead to make a soft dough. 
  7. Cover, and let it rise for at least an hour.
  8. Take a small amount of dough and roll it into a long, thin log. 
  9. Put olive oil in a saucepan and as soon as it is well heated, fry the lalagia until they turn golden on all sides. This process should not be more than 3 to 4 minutes. 
  10. Place on a plate covered with parchment paper so the oil is absorbed.
  11. Allow to cool down a bit before serving. 
You can keep lalagia fresh if you place them in a bowl with a lid. Enjoy!