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Mlinci is an egg-based crispy noodle-like flatbread usually eaten as a sort of dumpling in Slovenian and Croatian cuisine. It is most commonly eaten in the northern part of Croatia. This food bears some similarity to both noodles and crackers, and is sometimes called a baked noodle. Before serving, this food item is cooked and rehydrated by soaking it in hot, salted water for a short period of time, after which it can be flavored and used as a side dish. It is a part of side dishes served at home-cooked dinners held for many events and holidays, including Christmas.
This flatbread is most often a homemade item reserved for special occasions, and is not frequently ordered in restaurants. It is made by mixing flour and salt with water and eggs, then rolling the dough out into a thin, flat sheet before baking it. When baking mlinci, an important step is to turn it over so both sides of the flatbread evenly brown. To ensure even cooking, they are typically placed on the bottom oven rack while baking.
Finished mlincis are somewhat similar to large crackers, but with tougher texture that bears some similarity to a dry noodle. Usually, each sheet of mlinci dough is rolled out to about the size of a piece of standard notebook paper, but since it is broken before it is served anyway, the size is unimportant. The best size for mlinci sheets mainly depends on the preferences of the cook and how the baked product is going to be stored.
When mlinci is served, it is usually broken up into large bite-size pieces and soaked in hot salted water to prepare. The hot water is then drained from the mlincis. After the mlinci flatbread pieces are soaked and drained, other things are added to the noodles to give the dish flavor. Soaked mlinci can be added to soups, or covered in gravy or cooked meat drippings and served as a side dish with meat. Turkey is a common type of meat served with mlinci, but it is a versatile ingredient that can be used with many other ingredients. They can also be served with dairy-based sauces, like cheese and sour cream.
Slovenia is a country located in Central Europe, and Croatia is a country located in Southeastern and Central Europe. Croatia is Slovenia's neighbor on its southern border. Both Croatia and Slovenia also share borders with Hungary. Mlinci is just one of many dishes common to both Croatian and Slovenian cuisine, as both countries openly share culinary influences with each other.