This is a dessert recipe from the rocky island of Krk, located at the top of the Adriatic near the Istrian peninsula. To my understanding, almost every village on the island uses the same preparation for this rustic little cake, although I’m sure there are variations all over the Balkans.
What makes it unique to Krk is the cheese that goes into it; a local cheese produced from sheep or goats that graze on the island. Due to the sodium-rich rocky pastures, the milk from these animals has its own unique taste, producing a cheese that’s an island delicacy.
Thanks to being on the opposite side of the world to Croatia, finding krčki sir in Sydney is pretty much impossible. The flavour/texture profile seems to lean towards a cross between feta and manchego. Not salty like feta, but with a similar “squeakiness”, and the same creamy density as manchego.
My choice was a manchego that had as little salt as I could find. There was a lot of tasting going on in the deli’s I went to, believe me! The pastry is much like your regular pie variety, harbouring a filling that’s akin to that of a friand.
Here’s hoping I get to Krk when I’m next in Croatia, just to try the cheese and hopefully find somewhere that makes presnac. Only then will I see how this one compares to the one that’s made where it originates.
All in good time!