Pide Trials…

One of the things I like doing when I am back to Istanbul is to go to one of those restaurants where they bake their lahmacun and pide in a brick oven that welcomes you with its heat. I sit and order, then watch the almost automated, harmonious movements of the cook: take the little dough ball, flatten, top it up with the filling, shape it, and, whoop, it is lost in the oven on the wooden peel with a mile-long handle. Take the second dough ball, repeat…repeat…repeat… and repeat…

Mind you, the cooks are not robotic. Their gazes are always on the customer and on their boss while keeping an eye on the oven, expecting the next order. They joke with each other or with you if they catch you looking at them. They yell with their deep, loud voice when the order is ready. Pides and lahmacuns fly in and out of the oven continuously.  Watching them at work is like watching a well-oiled machine cranking effortlessly delivering you delicious food.

There is no limit to the filling options. You can make it with whatever you like. One of my favorites is with an egg on top. You bake the empty shaped dough half way through, take it out for a minute to crack the egg in it, put it back in. That over easy egg sits beautifully in pide. I would even put several slices of soujuk on it to make it for breakfast.

I find it easier to assemble the dough and the filling on a piece of parchment paper first (still,put some cornmeal on the paper), then slide it into the hot oven with the paper underneath. The filling made the dough a little heavier and it was difficult to slide the sticky dough onto the baking stone.That is when the carefully made shape was lost in several of mine.  Next time, I will make the dough with less water and see how it handles itself under the pressure of halloumi cheese. That is why this is a trial….until I get the dough and the baking method right. Until then, there will be a lot of these coming out of my oven this winter.


Adapted from Classical Turkish Cooking by Ayla Algar, Makes 6 or 8

  • 4 cups of unbleached all purpose flour (I use King Arthur’s)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1.5 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 3 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1.5 cup of warm water

Glaze: 1 egg yolk whisked with 1 tablespoon milk

Filling Options

You will need about 3 to 4 tablespoon of filling for each pide. Make sure you have extra at hand just in case it is needed.

  • Hallumi cheese with parsley (You can buy it here or here or at your local Middle Eastern store)
  • Feta cheese with soujuk
  • Feta cheese with cooked/squeezed spinach
  • Sauteed ground beef cooked with finely diced onion/ tomatoes/parsley
  • Sauted minced lamb cooked with finely diced onion/tomatoes/parsley

1. Make the dough and knead 10-15 min. Oil a big mixing bowl, place the dough in it, cover, let it rise until it doubles in volume.

2. Make the filling.

3. Divide the dough into 6 equal portions. Make each into a ball, cover, let it rest for another 30 min.(You can make 8 pides with the same dough. I like my pide dough a  bit thick that is why I divide it into 6. If you like much thinner crust, you can go with 8 but might make it smaller)

4. Preheat the oven to 550 degrees. If using tiles, preheat them for 30 min.

5. Roll each dough ball into a 6 inch by 10-12 inch long oval shape. Leave about 1/2 inch border empty along the pide and spread the filling.I recommend transferring the dough onto a piece of parchment paper before putting the filling. Filling makes it heavier and soggier and prevents an easy transfer onto the heated stone in the oven. You can easily place the paper on the tile. If you are using baking sheet, then assemble everything on the sheet.

6. Fold the 1/2 inch border over the filling and bring the ends together on each end, making it a canoe shape.

7. Brush the glaze and bake about 8 minutes or golden brown.

8. Continue with other pieces.


  1. by Parsley Sage
    8:38 am
    Nov 4, 2012

    There’s that gorgeous soujuk again! I’m beginning to think your kitchen is the best in the US. I don’t know how these can get any better, they incredible now, but I’ll trust you on that one :)

    Awesome pide, darling!

  2. by Erica
    12:04 pm
    Nov 4, 2012

    Your pide looks amazing…better then some I saw in Izmir. I’ll copy this recipe and make it for my Turkish husband. For 25 years I always make Turkish food for him but never a pide…so thank you for posting this recipe.
    ….yummmm for sucuk, we get it weekly here at the Istanbul Marche store in Toronto. His favorite with eggs.
    Just found your Blog and will now follow it….. thanks for sharing your recipes and great photo’s.

  3. by Ilke
    6:36 pm
    Nov 4, 2012

    Thank you Erica! So nice to meet you. Getting sucuk weekly?? I can barely finish mine in a month or two:)

  4. by kitchenriffs
    12:19 pm
    Nov 4, 2012

    These are great! They’re similar to calzones, but even better. Love the flavors you’re using to fill them. Really interesting recipe and post – thanks so much.

  5. by Angie@Angie's Recipes
    1:27 pm
    Nov 4, 2012

    Fantastic! I love pide, but normally just the plain one. Cute canoe shape.

  6. by Terra
    7:52 pm
    Nov 4, 2012

    This pizza lover, even though I know it is not pizza, loves this recipe!!! What a fun way to shape the Pide, and reminds me of what a french bread pizza looks like…..BUT sooooooo much better of course!!! The ingredients you added in sound really delicious, we recently learned about Hallumi cheese, and pretty much LOVE it! Gorgeous, Hugs, Terra

  7. by Shelley
    11:00 am
    Nov 5, 2012

    Your pide turned out lovely! I could eat bread with toppings for every meal and the version with the poached egg sounds especially good. Also, thanks for mentioning your parchment paper trick. I’ve ruined the shape of my breads so many times transferring them to a baking stone. I’m going to use your tip and try parchment paper next time.

  8. by Susan
    7:39 pm
    Nov 6, 2012

    Wonderful story, Ilke. What gorgeous “boats” these are, with their delicious cargo! I would love to try this with the feta/spinach filling. Lovely photos!

  9. by Mrs Ergül
    11:36 pm
    Nov 7, 2012

    Good idea making it on parchment prior to sending it into the oven. The one time I tried to make these, the pide got so elongated in the transferring process that it looks horrid. Ohhhhh where can I get sucuk here! Darn!!!

    PS: I love it with an egg on it too!!!


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