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Lahmacun





INGREDIENTS

For the Dough:
·     
300ml warm water
·      1 sachet (7g) fast action yeast
·      1 tsp sugar
·      150ml warm milk
·      1 tbsp sunflower oil
·      2 tbsp natural yoghurt
·      780g plain white flour

For the Topping:
·     
4 onions, peeled, roughly chopped
·      3 large ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
·      1 red bell pepper, cored, roughly chopped
·      1 green bell pepper, cored, roughly chopped
·      6 cloves garlic, peeled
·      1 large handful (bunch) fresh parsley, roughly chopped
·      2 level tbsp tomato puree
·      2 level tbsp red pepper paste
·      3 tbsp sunflower oil
·      1 heaped tsp cumin
·      1 heaped tsp paprika
·      1 tsp pul biber
·      1 tsp salt
·      1 tsp black pepper
·      400g beef mince (you can use lamb mince if you prefer, which is more traditional)

METHOD
1.   
For the dough: Pour the water into a large bowl and gently stir in the yeast and sugar. Pour in the milk, oil and yoghurt, and whisk gently with a fork. 
2. 
Start to sift in the flour and the salt (I did a third at a time), and start by stirring with a spoon or a fork, and then getting your hands involved once most of the flour has been added. Once the flour has been fully mixed in, put the dough onto a surface and knead for at least 10-15 minutes until the dough is soft and pliable. 
3.  
Rub a little olive over the dough, place back into the bowl, and cover with clingfilm or a tea towel and leave for up to an hour. 
4. 
While the dough is proving, make the topping mixture. 
5.   Blitz the onions in a food processor, then place them into a sieve over a large bowl so excess liquid can drain out. 
6.  Blitz the tomatoes and add to a large deep tray or dish. Do the same with the peppers, parsley and garlic all at once and add to the dish. 
7.   Add the meat, spices, seasoning and oil to the dish, and finally the drained onions (you can gently ease a little more liquid out of the onions, by pushing down on them lightly with the back of a spoon while they're in the sieve), and mix everything together really well for a few minutes with your hands (it's quite a loose mixture). Cover the dish with clingfilm and place in the fridge until the dough is ready. 
8. 
After an hour, the dough will be ready and risen, so take it out of the bowl and punch it down a little. Knead again for a minute or so, then divide the dough into 18-20 equal sized balls. 
9. 
Take the topping mixture out of the fridge. 
10.            
Flour the surface liberally and start rolling out each of the balls into a thin disk, the size of a dinner plate. 
11.Heat a large bottomed frying / saute pan (again, where the base is roughly the size of a dinner plate), on a medium to low heat. Do not add anything to the pan. At the same time, heat the grill (I set mine to 3). 
12.            
Once the pan is hot, add one of the lahmacun bases to the pan and quickly, but carefully, spread a heaped tbsp (or a little more) of the topping all over it, keeping it just shy of the edges of the base. 
13.              After 3-4 minutes the base should have browned (with slightly darker spot marks all over), at which point you can pop it under the grill for another 3-5 minutes for the top to brown a little. 
14.            
Once you have the first one in the pan, the trick is to start rolling the others until you've always got one in the pan, under the grill and one rolled (all at the same time), so that once the one in the grill comes out, and the one in the pan goes under the grill, the rolled one can go into the empty pan to start the process all over again. Keep repeating this process until all 18-20 lahmacun are cooked (stack them on top of each other as they come out of the grill). 
15.             
These are wonderful served with lots of freshly squeezed lemon, sliced onion and fresh parsley (I like fresh tomatoes in there too), then rolled up and devoured. 


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