Pide is a Turkish flatbread formed into a boat-like shape. It’s addictively good, anytime of the day — breakfast, lunch or dinner. Check out this vegetarian version made with eggplant and more.
While pide can be layered with various toppings, ground beef or lamb is often common. However, I was in the mood for something on the lighter side, so went a slightly different route — vegetarian Turkish pide — with a combination of canned tomatoes, eggplant, bell pepper, garlic, feta, and chile. There’s noting worse than undercooked spongy eggplant, so you’ll want to get your pan nice and hot and cook the eggplant until tender and caramelized (in batches, preferably). The rest of the vegetables are then added and sautéed until they are thick and reduced and absolutely delicious with a ‘meaty’ taste and texture, albeit without actual meat.
I made the dough the day before and let it rest in the refrigerator for a slow rise overnight. In a pinch, you could easily use store-bought pizza dough. I’m also curious to try this with sourdough, as I really like its fermented tang. From there, it’s just a matter of rolling out the dough into a long oval, layering on the toppings, folding over the long edges and pinching the ends to form its classic boat-like shape.
A baking steel or stone will enable you to get a really nice crispy browned crust. Just make sure to heat your steel/stone for at least one hour. With a pizza peel, slide the pide onto the hot steel/stone and bake for 10-15 minutes, until nicely browned and crispy.
There is enough dough to make six pide. I made three and devoured the rest of the filling on its own. The pide were delicious; really wish I had made a larger amount of the eggplant filling so I could make some more of these delicious flatbreads. Guess I need to make another trip to the grocery store.
Decided to crack an egg on top of one of them. I gave the pide a few minutes head start in the oven and then cracked an egg on top — and allowed the pide to continue baking until the egg white was just set and the yolk still runny.
Click HERE for the dough recipe.
- 1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes
- Olive oil
- 1 large eggplant (about 1 pound), ½-inch dice
- Salt and pepper
- 1 large red bell pepper, ½-inch dice
- 5-6 cloves of garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon hot smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon red chile flakes, more or less to taste
- ¼ cup chopped parsley
- 6 ounces crumbled feta
- Click the link above for the recipe.
- Pulse the tomatoes in a food process. Alternatively, crush by hand.
- Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large pan. When hot, add half of the eggplant, season with salt and pepper and cook until soft and nicely browned, about 10 minutes. Remove from the pan and set aside. Add the rest of the eggplant and bell pepper and a tablespoon or two of olive oil and repeat with the second batch. Add the garlic and cook another minute or two. Add the paprika and chile flakes, and sauté an minute. Season with salt and pepper. Add the reserved eggplant back to the pan, along with the tomatoes. Simmer until thick and reduced, about 10 minutes. Stir in the chopped parsley. Remove from the heat and set aside. When cool, fold in the crumbled feta.
- Click the link above for the recipe.
- Place a baking steel or stone in the oven (if using). Preheat the oven to 550F. Heat the stone for at least one hour. Meanwhile, take the dough out of the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature.
- Cut the dough into six pieces. Keep the rest covered to prevent drying out. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out one piece of dough into a large oval, approximately 14- by 5½-inches. If the dough won’t stretch, let it rest a few minutes to relax the gluten. Place on parchment to make it easier to transfer to the oven.
- Lightly brush the dough with olive oil. Spread the eggplant filling, about ½ cup, over the surface of the dough, leaving a ½-inch border on the sides. Fold the long edges of the dough over and pinch the edges to form a canoe-shape. Brush the outed edges of the dough with olive oil. Repeat with the rest of the dough.
- Slide the pide on the parchment onto a pizza peel and transfer to the hot stone (you should be able to fit two pide at a time on the hot stone). Bake until golden brown, about 10-15 minutes. Garnish with chopped parsley. Slice and devour.