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Savory Pastries

Home made Turkish Pide Bread; Pide Ekmek

Home made Turkish round flat bread, Pide Ekmek

Home made Turkish round flat bread, Pide Ekmek

Firin, bakery in Long Market, Uzun Carsi; fond memories of getting our daily bread from there.

Firin, bakery in Long Market, Uzun Carsi; fond memories of getting our daily bread from there.

Bread, ekmek is a major staple in Turkish cuisine and appears generously at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Bread is treated with high respect and rarely wasted at home; stale bread is used in spreads like in this Walnuts and red pepper paste dip, Muhammara – Cevizli Biber, in soups as well as in puddings. Traditional oval or round pide bread, Ekmek, is a national favorite, traditionally cooked in hot clay oven. Pide bread is also a must in Turkish tables and highly consumed during the Ramadan period to break the fast. I have lots of fond childhood memories of strolling through Uzun Carsi, Long Market in Antakya to pick up the freshly baked bread and how delicious it was. Grandma would always order a spare one as she knew we had a soft spot for pide bread and half would be gone on the way home – just irresistible.

Stretch the dough into large, uneven rounds and indent the dough with your fingertips.

Stretch the dough into large, uneven rounds and indent the dough with your fingertips.

This version of pide (recipe adapted from Ghillie Basan’s Classic Turkish Cookery book) has a crispy crust but soft in texture, great to serve with mezzes and mop up the delicious juices of the casseroles and indispensable at Turkish Breakfast. Important tip: To keep the pides soft and warm, place a dry towel over them when fresh out of the oven. You can also reheat them before eating; just sprinkle them with water and place in a hot oven (180 C/ 350 F) for a few minutes.

Turkish pide bread, pide ekmek

Turkish pide bread, pide ekmek, straight from the oven

Afiyet Olsun,

Ozlem

5.0 from 2 reviews
Home made Turkish Pide Bread; Pide Ekmek
 
Bread, ekmek is a major staple in Turkish cuisine and appears generously at breakfast, lunch and dinner. This Turkish pide bread is delicious and easy to make at home. Pide is great to serve with mezzes and dips or mop up the delicious juices of casseroles and stews. This recipe makes Makes 2 medium sized Pide.
Author:
Recipe type: Turkish Flat Breads
Cuisine: Turkish Cuisine
Serves: 8 - 10
Ingredients
  • 1 lb. / 450 gr all-purpose plain flour
  • ¼ oz. 7 gr dried yeast or ½ oz. / 15 gr fresh yeast
  • ½ tsp. sugar
  • 6 fl. oz. / 175 ml lukewarm water
  • 5 ml/ 1 tsp. salt
  • 30 ml/ 2 tbsp. thick yoghurt
  • 30 ml/ 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 30 ml / 2 tbsp. nigella seeds or poppy seeds
  • 30 ml / 2 tbsp. sesame seeds
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F / 200 C
  2. Cream the yeast with sugar in half of the lukewarm water, leave to froth.
  3. Sift the flour with the salt. Make a well in the middle and pour in the yeast, olive oil, yoghurt and the rest of the water. With using your hands, draw in the flour from the sides and work the mixture into a sticky dough. Add a little more water if necessary. Knead until the dough is smooth and leaves the sides of the bowl (drizzle a little oil in your hands to help shape the dough, if needed too).
  4. Continue to knead on a lightly floured surface until the dough is elastic and smooth. Roll it in the few drops of olive oil in the bowl, cover with a damp towel and leave to prove in a warm place for 1- 1 ½ hours or until doubled in size.
  5. Preheat 2 baking sheets.
  6. Once doubled, punch the dough down, knead again and divide it into two pieces. Knead each piece well. Flatten them out with the heel of your hand and stretch them into large, uneven rounds or ovals, creating thick lip around the edges. Indent the dough with your fingertips.
  7. Lightly oil two hot baking sheets and place them in the oven for 2 minutes. Place the pide on them and brush the pides with the beaten egg. Then sprinkle the nigella (or poppy) seeds and sesame seeds over the top.
  8. Bake the pides for 18 – 20 minutes, until lightly golden with a crisp crust around the edges. Transfer them to a wire rack. If you want them to retain their softness, wrap them in aluminum foil or in a dry towel while still warm.
Notes
To keep the pides soft and warm, place a dry towel over them when fresh out of the oven. You can also reheat them before eating; just sprinkle them with water and place in a hot oven (180 C/ 350 F) for a few minutes.
 

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Mini Pizzas with Olives, Cheese and Tomatoes; Zeytinli Mini Pizza

Mini pizzas with olives, cheese, tomatoes; zeytinli mini pizza

Mini pizzas with olives, cheese, tomatoes; zeytinli mini pizza

I love the savory pastries, pogaca and little melt-in-the-mouth mini pizzas with various fillings sold in bakeries, firin and patisseries, pastanes, in Turkey. We Turks love them for breakfast as well as for a morning or afternoon snack with cup of tea, cay; such a delicious treat.

Mini pizzas with olives, tomatoes and cheese, freshly baked - delicious!

Mini pizzas with olives, tomatoes and cheese, freshly baked – delicious!

Recently I made these little pizzas with olives, tomato and cheese topping; they really are easy to make at home and have brought smiles all round!:) A favorite with children, as well and adults, they were a big hit. Mini pizzas are best to be enjoyed straight from the oven, but they also keep well for a few days. The next day (if any left), you can microwave them for 10 – 15 seconds. Or you can sprinkle a little water over them, cover and reheat at 180 C/350 F for 5- 8 minutes. They will be lovely, soft and delicious.

Shaping the mini pizzas; round Turkish tea glass or a mug works well.

Shaping the mini pizzas; round Turkish tea glass or a mug works well.

Tips: Make sure to deseed the tomatoes before chopping so that it won’t make the filling watery and the pastry soggy. As for the cheese, you can use grated mozzarella, cheddar or crumbled feta cheese. For olives; Turkish, Spanish or Greek Kalamata olives all work well. To shape the mini pizza rounds, I used my tulip shaped glass Turkish tea glass, it worked perfectly. If you don’t have one, any glass or round mold in 7-8 cm diameter would work.

Mini pizzas with olives, cheese and tomatoes, Zeytinli mini pizza, ready to eat!

 I hope you enjoy these delicious mini pizzas with olives, cheese and tomatoes – Afiyet Olsun;

Ozlem

5.0 from 2 reviews
Mini Pizzas with Olives, Cheese and Tomatoes; Zeytinli Mini Pizza
 
I love the savory pastries, pogacas and these little melt-in-the-mouth mini pizzas with various fillings sold in bakeries, firin and patisseries, pastanes, in Turkey. We Turks love them for breakfast as well as for a morning or afternoon snack with cup of tea, cay; such a delicious treat. They are easy to make at home and a real crowd pleaser, hope you enjoy them - afiyet olsun!
Author:
Recipe type: Turkish Savory Pastries
Cuisine: Turkish Cuisine
Serves: 35 mini pizzas
Ingredients
  • 375 gr/ 3 cups all-purpose plain flour
  • 7gr dry yeast (1 sachet)
  • 5 ml/ 1 tsp. salt
  • 10 ml/ 2 tsp. sugar
  • 240 ml / 8 fl. oz. / 1 cup warm milk
  • 15 ml/ 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 50 gr / 2 oz. butter, melted
  • For the filling:
  • 3 small tomatoes, deseeded and finely chopped
  • Handful - about 15- green and black olives, roughly chopped
  • 200 gr / 7 oz. / 2 cups grated mozzarella or cheddar cheese
  • 15 ml / 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • For the topping:
  • 1 egg, beaten
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 180 C / 350 F
  2. Combine the warm milk, sugar and dry yeast in a small bowl and mix well. Let it stand for 5 minutes so that it gets foamy.
  3. Stir in the flour and salt in a large bowl and make a well in the middle.
  4. Add the melted butter and slowly pour in the milk & yeast mixture.
  5. Knead well with your hands for a few minutes, until the dough comes together. Have a drizzle (about 1 tbsp.) of olive oil in your hands if the dough gets too sticky; knead and shape the dough like a ball.
  6. Place the dough in the large bowl and cover with a cling film and a tea towel. Let it rise in a warm place for 45-60 minutes or until doubled in size.
  7. Prepare the filling while the dough is rising. Deseed the tomatoes and olives and chop finely. Place them in a medium sized bowl and stir in the grated cheese and olive oil. Combine and mix well. Set the filling aside.
  8. Once the dough has risen, punch down and divide 3 equal pieces and roll into balls.
  9. On a lightly floured surface, roll out each of the ball of dough with a rolling pin into thin flat rounds in ⅓ cm (0.14”) width. Using a round mold or round glass of 8 cm/3” in diameter, cut the flat dough into circles. Repeat until all the dough is used.
  10. Line baking parchment paper on your baking tray and place the dough circles on it. Using your finger, make a little dent in the middle of each dough circle.
  11. Place a dessert spoonful of filling in each dough circle (in and around the dent).
  12. Brush the pastries with the beaten egg and bake in the preheated oven (180 C/ 350 F) for 15 minutes or until golden around the edges.
  13. Serve hot immediately. This recipe makes 35 mini pizzas; afiyet olsun!
Notes
Make sure to deseed the tomatoes before chopping so that it won’t make the filling watery and the pastry soggy. As for the cheese, you can use grated mozzarella, cheddar or crumbled feta cheese. For olives; Turkish, Spanish or Greek Kalamata olives all work well. To shape the mini pizza rounds, I used my tulip shaped glass Turkish tea glass, it worked perfectly. If you don’t have one, any glass or round mold in 7-8 cm diameter would work.
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Flatbreads with feta, zahtar and red pepper paste; Biberli Ekmek

Turkish flat breads with crumbled feta, hot pepper paste, zahtar and sesame seeds, Biberli Ekmek

Turkish flat breads with crumbled feta, hot pepper paste, zahtar and sesame seeds, Biberli Ekmek

This delicious flat bread with spicy red pepper paste, biber salcasi, feta cheese and za’atar or zahtar spice blend is a specialty from the Antakya cuisine and brings special memories back. I remember my grandmother and mum preparing the delicious topping at home and we children would take it to the local bakery, firin, to be baked over flat breads. They always smelled mesmerizing and we couldn’t wait to have a bite (or two).

Aromatic and pungent zahtar or za'atar blend

Aromatic and pungent zahtar or za’atar blend

Fresh Zahter or Zahtar is a popular herb grown in southern part of Turkey, especially around Kilis and Antakya in spring. Fresh zahter looks more like summer savory, or a crossing of marjoram, oregano and thyme. This herb is wonderful on salads like this Zeytin Ufeleme, Olive salad with pomegranate molasses and zahtar. Za’atar is also the name given to the exotic blend of herbs, spices and nuts, widely used in Southern Turkish as well as Middle Eastern cooking. At my home town, Antakya, zahtar blend is a rich mixture of dried zahter, sesame seeds, crushed cooked chickpeas, cumin, nigella seeds, sea salt, sumac and many more. It has a lovely, pungent, nutty taste and flavors salads, meat, and vegetables beautifully. In Antakya, locals simply dip their bread to a bowl of olive oil than to this zahtar blend for a delicious breakfast. I now see wholesome zahtar available even in supermarkets these days, you can also make your own zahter or za’atar blend, here’s my recipe.

Spread the topping over the flat bread and let the dough rise for 30 minutes.

Spread the topping over the flat bread and let the dough rise for 30 minutes.

These delicious and healthy flat breads also feature Antakya’s much loved olive oil, Turkish hot pepper paste, biber salcasi and crumbled feta cheese, cokelek. Combined with zahtar, sesame seeds and cumin, it makes a scrumptious, wholesome and fragrant topping for the flat breads. There is a delicious heat from red pepper paste, biber salcasi, a staple in Antakya cuisine and in my kitchen, which add so much flavor. You can make your own red pepper paste, biber salcasi with my recipe; it really is worth the effort. If not, you can add red pepper flakes, mixed with tomato paste instead.

Delicious flat breads with crumbled feta, red pepper paste, sesame seeds and spices; Biberli Ekmek

Delicious flat breads with crumbled feta, red pepper paste, sesame seeds and spices; Biberli Ekmek

I hope you enjoy Biberli Ekmek; it is delicious served as a mezze (try with hummus, muhammara, cevizli biber – red pepper paste and walnut dip or with cacik, yoghurt dip with cucumbers and dried mint), accompanies tea time, soups and main courses so well.

Afiyet Olsun,

Ozlem

5.0 from 2 reviews
Flatbreads with feta, zahtar and red pepper paste; Biberli Ekmek
 
I hope you enjoy Biberli Ekmek; Turkish flat breads with crumbled feta, red pepper paste, sesame seeds, spices and zahtar blend. This easy recipe from Antakya, southern Turkey also showcases region's wonderful olive oil and crumbled feta, cokelek. Delicious and wholesome; try as a mezze (try with Hummus, Muhammara – red pepper paste and walnut dip or with Cacik, yoghurt dip with cucumbers and dried mint), or at tea time, with soups and main courses.
Author:
Recipe type: Turkish flat breads with spicy feta cheese topping
Cuisine: Turkish Regional Cuisine - Antakya Cuisine
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • For the dough:
  • 3 cups/16 oz./ 1 lb. plain flour
  • 1 sachet (7 gr ) dried yeast
  • 5 ml/ 1 tsp salt
  • ½ cup / 4 fl. oz. luke warm milk
  • ¾ cup/ 5 fl. oz. luke warm water
  • ⅓ cup / 3 fl. oz. olive oil
  • For the topping:
  • 200 gr/ 7 oz. crumbled feta cheese or cokelek
  • 30 ml/ 2 tbsp. Turkish hot pepper paste, biber salcasi
  • 15 ml / 1 tbsp. concentrated tomato paste
  • 10 ml/ 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 45 ml/ 3 tbsp. sesame seeds
  • 30 ml / 2 tbsp. zahtar or za’atar
  • 30 ml/ 2 tbsp. olive oil
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 180 C / 350 F
  2. Prepare the topping first. Combine the crumbled feta (or cokelek), red pepper paste, tomato paste all the spices, sesame seeds and olive oil. Knead with your hands to blend them well to form a smooth paste. Set the topping aside.
  3. Now let’s make the dough. Combine the flour, dried yeast and salt in a large bowl.
  4. Stir in the warm milk, warm water and olive oil and knead for 3 minutes to form a soft dough. If it gets sticky, drizzle a little extra olive oil in your hand to shape the dough, it really helps.
  5. Grease a baking tray with 1 tbsp. olive oil and spread the dough as a thin flat bread base, reaching all the edges (about ¼ cm, 0.9”).
  6. Spread the topping evenly over the flat bread.
  7. Leave the flat bread with topping on at a warm spot to rise for 30 minutes.
  8. Once the dough's risen, bake in the preheated oven (180 C / 350 F) for 18 – 20 minutes.
  9. Let the baked flat bread with spicy feta cheese topping, Biberli Ekmek to cool down for 15 minutes.
  10. Slice and serve as part of a mezze spread or with tea, Turkish cay.
 

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