Lahmacun - Turkish Pizza

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Lahmacun - Turkish Pizza

Post  Admin on Sat Jan 19, 2013 11:20 am

Lahmacuns - (Turkish Pizzas)

We used to buy these when we lived in London.....they are absolutely scrummy !!! It depends how big you make them , but you will definitely want more than one !!!

You can fold them into 4 or roll them to eat.....sometimes people top them with finely shredded lettuce / onions / tomatoes before rolling and eating.....Yummy

You can find this recipe illustrated at :-

Some recipes say you can use packeted tortillas as a base.....I have tried this and wasnt impressed....They are really too thin and are too crisp when they have been in the oven .....Much better to use the bread dough....


Yield: 10-12 Lahmacuns
Prep. time and baking duration: about 2 hours

Ingredients for the Dough

1 tsp dry active yeast
0,5 tsp sugar
1+1/2 cup of warm water
4,5 cups of flour (you can use plain wheat)+
Little oil to brush the dough

Ingredients for the topping:

12 oz of minced beef or lamb (I always use 85 % lean beef)
1 big onion
2-3 cloves of garlic
2 Tbsp of butter
1,5 cups of fresh curly parsley
1 cup of fresh mint
1 medium tomato
1 tsp of chili pepper
1 jalapeno (optional)
1 tsp paprika (optional)
1 tsp of cumin (optional)
salt according to your own taste
Juice of 1 lemon
little oil to brush the dough

Directions for the dough:

In a small bowl mix yeast and the sugar. Add 1/2 cup of warm water, stir well, close the lid (or cover with plate). You can leave the bowl on the counter but I usually put it somewhere warm. Warmth accelerates the process and better activates the yeast. Activating yeast is important to have a better rising dough. Keep the mixture warm for about 15 minutes without opening the lid. When the time is up, you should have a nice foamy liquid. Even if you do not, still keep it and make the dough. It will still work.

In a large bowl combine the remaining water, flour and the yeast mixture.

Mix everything well and knead it into a nice soft, springy dough. It should be soft as your ear lobes. Add flour or water as needed. A well-kneaded dough will be much easier to work with later. Keep this in mind!
Coat the dough with just a little bit of oil, cover with damp cloth and leave it to rise in a warm place. I usually cover the bowl with the lid and bundle it up nicely to have a good volume dough. Give it a rest for around 1 hour before you take it out from the cover. When you do take the dough out, make sure it has doubled in size.

Once the time is up, open up the lid and punch the dough a little. Flour the working surface and drop the dough. Cut it into pieces smaller than a tennis ball but larger that a golf ball. You should have about 10-12 pieces.

Roll each one into a ball and place on the floured surface. Cover with a damp cloth and let it stand until your topping is ready (20 min). Turn the oven on and keep it at 420 F.

Directions for the topping:

Wash the greens well and chop them nicely. I usually wash and soak parsley with mint in water prior to using them. This way all the dirt remains in the water.

Cut the onion and garlic in pieces, chop until nicely minced.Heat the skillet to medium-high, melt the butter, add onion+garlic mixture, saute for about 1 minute. Reduce the heat to low, close the lid and simmer for 2 more minutes. Dont let the onion brown. Take the skillet off the burner and cool the onion mixture.

Peel the skin off tomato and cut it to very small pieces. A lot of people like to seed the tomatoes. I don’t since it also removes all the juice from the tomato. But if you feel like seeding the tomato, go ahead.

Have all the ingredients in one big bowl. At this point, add chili pepper, salt, cumin, lemon juice, paprika, chopped jalapenos (or chopped pickled hot peppers) and mix everything very well. I am stressing this – the ingredients MUST be well mixed!

The dough is well rested at this point. Take one by one and roll into a round, flat circle or an oval measuring up to 5 mm in height. I like my Lahmacuns very thin. This way they come out a little crispy. My husband likes them much softer so I make his portion a little thicker but no more than 5-8 mm.

Lightly oil a baking sheet before placing the rolled dough on it ,(spray oil is perfect)..... slightly brush the dough with some olive oil .... top up with 2 Tbsp of the ready topping. Spread the topping evenly and very thinly.

You can place 2 doughs in one regular 11″x17″ size baking sheet. ...3 baking sheets are enough to keep the whole process going pretty fast. Put two baking sheets in the oven at a time. The top one usually gets baked faster. When you take the ready batch out, rotate the bottom one to the top and place a new batch on the lower rack.

The oven should remain at 420F – not too high and not too low. Since you are going to be constantly opening the oven, the temperature ideally will stay at about 370F. Cooked Lahmacuns are crispy at the ends and softer in the middle. Corners usually get nicely tanned. Take them off the baking sheet to a wider container and cover with a towel until you are done with every single one of them. Humidity under the towel will soften Lahmacuns, making it very easy for you to roll them around the fresh ingredients you might want to use.

Pace yourself, the end result is worth every minute of your time in the kitchen.

Bon appetit![b]

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