Lahmacun, also known as Turkish pizza is a delicious cheeseless pizza recipe, very popular in Middle Eastern countries. The dough used to make Lahmacun is pretty much the same as the Italian pizza dough recipe. The difference between Turkish and Italian pizza lies in the topping. Italian pizza is topped with a variety of cheeses and cold cuts. Turkish pizza is instead topped with a sauce made with vegetables, lamb, and lots of spices. This recipe represents a fusion between Arabic food and traditional Italian food. Turkish pizza has less fat and calories than Italian pizza. It is one of those dishes, that once you taste it, it is difficult to forget because of the diversity and richness of the spices it contains.
What are the main ingredients in Lahmacun?A good Lahmacun depends almost entirely on the topping. Although dough is also important, we will dedicate a separate section to dough. The Lahmacun topping is made with a combination of minced meat, vegetables, and spices. This mixture should be low in moisture so that the pizza dough is not soft. The most used vegetables for this pizza are onion, garlic, and tomato. Many cooks grate tomatoes and onions with a cheese grater, then squeeze them with their hands to squeeze them out and remove excess water. This vegetable mixture is then kneaded with the ground meat and spices. The most used meat for this pizza is lamb meat, but it can also be made with beef or buffalo. Even a mixture of meats is very tasty. You can use half lamb meat, and the other half beef.
How is Lahmacun served?Lahmacun is a dish that is prepared in Middle Eastern homes, in Restaurants, but it can also be found as street food. The way to serve it will depend on that. For example, when taking the Lahmacun in the street. The most common way to serve it is rolled up as if it were shawarma. In homes and restaurants, it is served with a lettuce salad and topped with a topping of red onion and parsley. You can also add a little Greek yogurt.
Pizza doughYou can use this dough to prepare any pizza. It is a fast dough that does not require long fermentation times. If you haven't made pizza dough yet, don't worry. The recipe always works great. Like all doughs, pizza dough requires yeast. For the yeast to activate, you must soak it with a teaspoon of sugar in half a cup of warm water for about ten minutes. When the surface of the water is covered with bubbles, you will know that the yeast is good and you can begin the preparation. Then you just have to mix the diluted yeast, with the rest of the water and the oil. Form a volcano with the sifted flour and place the liquid in the center. Now with a little patience, knead until the ingredients are integrated into an elastic dough, which comes off easily. This dough requires a half-hour of rest until it doubles its volume. Some people cook pizza with raw dough. Ovens that have heated up and down can do this very well. But you may find some part of the raw surface. So, we recommend baking the dough for only ten minutes. Remove from the oven, cover with the topping, and make the final baking.
Turkish Pizza / Main Course
Lahmacun: Recipe for delicious Turkish Pizza
3 cups of all-purpose flour
1 ¼ cups of water
1 tsp of salt
1 ½ tsp of sugar
1 tbsp of oil
1 ½ tsp of dry yeast
500 g ground lamb meat
3 ripe tomatoes
1 medium white onion
2 garlic cloves
4 tbsp of tomatoes paste
1 tsp of ground cumin
½ tsp of ground turmeric
1 tsp of dried parsley
½ tsp of black pepper
salt to taste
For the dough:
For the topping:
In a large bowl, place the flour. Cut a hole in the center, and pour in the liquid mixture. Start mixing, when the mixture is integrated, take it to the table or a flat surface and continue kneading.
This dough will still be sticky, knead for about five minutes, if you need it you can add one to three tablespoons of wheat flour. Add the salt and continue kneading for three more minutes. Salt should be added last because it affects the fluffing process of the bread.
When the dough is elastic and comes off easily, form a ball and store it in a bowl covered with a damp cloth. The dough will double in size.
Remove from the bowl, place back on the table and knead again. Make a roll with the dough, and cut it into three equal pieces.
Preheat the oven to 150°C/300°F.
While the oven is heating, roll out the three long-shaped dough pieces into three pizza bases, with a maximum thickness of 3 mm.
Let them sit for five minutes. And then place them on a baking sheet. If the pan is not non-stick, you can add a little butter and sprinkle with flour or cover with wax paper.
Place the crushed dough on the tray and pierce it with a fork to prevent it from rising.
Bake them for about ten minutes and remove them from the oven to place the topping.
Peel the onion and tomatoes. Then grate them down the thick side of the cheese grater. Crush the garlic.
Place the grated vegetables on a colander and squeeze gently to remove excess fluids.
Then, in a mixing bowl, combine the minced meat, the grated tomato, the grated onion, the crushed garlic, the tomato paste, the cumin, the turmeric powder, the parsley powder, the pepper, and salt to taste. Knead until all the ingredients are well mixed.
Place a generous portion of this mixture on the pizza crust, and gently spread with a spoon until you reach 1 centimeter from the edge of the crust.
Bring the pizza to the oven, and bake for approximately 15 minutes until the meat is cooked through and the edges of the pizza are golden brown.
Remove from the oven, let cool about five minutes before cutting.
Serve with parsley and chopped onion on top.
In a bowl, mix half a cup of warm water with the sugar and yeast. Stir and let it rest for ten minutes.