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Turkish Pastrami and Egg Pide

Turkish Pastrami and Egg Pide

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5 from 4 reviews

  • Author: John Gregory-Smith
  • Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4


A classic pide – Turkish boat-shaped flatbread – is filled with cheese, topped with flavorful meat and baked egg. It’s a brunch dish to die for.


Units Scale

Pide Dough

  • All-purpose flour: 3 cups (360 g) plus extra for dusting
  • Warm water: 1 cup (240 ml)
  • Instant yeast: 1 tsp (3 g)
  • Sugar: 1 tsp (4 g)
  • Salt: 1 tsp (5 g)
  • Olive oil: 2 tbsp (30 ml)


  • Turkish beef pastrami: 5 oz (140 g)
  • Cheddar cheese, grated: 2 cups (packed) (about 225 g)
  • Eggs: 4
  • Turkish pepper flakes, for seasoning

Pastirma – Turkish Pastrami

  • Beef (preferably a lean cut like eye of round): 5 lbs (2.27 kg)
  • Sea salt: 1 cup (290 g)
  • Water: Enough to cover the beef
  • Garlic: 10 cloves, minced
  • Ground fenugreek: 2 tbsp (15 g)
  • Paprika: 1 tbsp (7 g)
  • Ground cayenne pepper: 1 tsp (2 g)
  • Ground black pepper: 1 tsp (2 g)

Pastirma Alternative:

  • 5oz beef tenderloin, finely sliced
  • 1/3 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/3 tsp ground fenugreek
  • 1/3 tsp paprika
  • 1/3 tsp black pepper
  • salt, to taste


For the Pastirma

Curing the Beef

  1. Prepare the Beef: Trim any excess fat from the beef and cut it into long, thick strips, about 2 inches wide.
  2. Salt Cure: Rub the beef thoroughly with sea salt. Place the salted beef in a large container, cover with water, and let it sit refrigerated for 5 days to cure. Change the water daily to remove excess salt.
  3. Rinse and Dry: After curing, rinse the beef strips under cold water to remove the surface salt. Pat them dry with paper towels.

Seasoning with Çemen Paste

  1. Prepare Çemen Paste: In a bowl, mix the minced garlic, ground fenugreek, paprika, cayenne pepper, and black pepper to form a thick paste.
  2. Apply the Paste: Coat each strip of beef generously with the çemen paste.
  3. Wrap and Press: Wrap the coated beef strips in cheesecloth. Place them in a cool, dry area and press them under a weight (like a heavy cutting board) for 24 hours.

Air Drying

  1. Hang to Dry: After pressing, hang the beef strips in a cool, ventilated, and dry place. The ideal air drying process can take 2-4 weeks, depending on the climate and the desired dryness.
  2. Check Regularly: Check the beef periodically to ensure it dries evenly and does not develop mold. If mold appears, wipe it off with vinegar.


  1. Once dried, pastirma can be sliced thinly and used immediately, or stored in the refrigerator wrapped in paper or cloth to prevent moisture buildup. It will keep for several months.

Pastirma Alternative:

Making a Simple Substitute at Home

  1. Thinly Slice the Beef: Choose a lean cut of beef and slice it thinly.
  2. Season and Cook: Season with a mixture of garlic powder, ground fenugreek, paprika, and black pepper. Quickly pan-fry the slices in a very hot skillet with a little oil just until cooked through.

For the Pide Dough:

  1. Mix Dry Ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, yeast, sugar, and salt.
  2. Add Wet Ingredients: Mix in warm water and olive oil until the dough begins to form.
  3. Knead the Dough: Transfer to a floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes until smooth and elastic.
  4. Let it Rise: Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover with a damp cloth, and let it rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled in size.

Shape and Prepare Pide

  1. Preheat Oven: Set the oven to 425°F (220°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Divide the Dough: After the first rise, punch down the dough and divide it into 4 equal pieces.
  3. Shape the Pide: Roll each piece on a floured surface into a large, thin oval shape. Prick the surface with a fork.
  4. Add Filling: Arrange pastrami and cheddar cheese in the center, leaving a ¾-inch border.
  5. Form the Boat Shape: Fold the edges over the filling and pinch the ends to create a boat shape.

Bake the Pide

  1. Initial Baking: Place the shaped pide on the prepared sheet and bake for 7 minutes.
  2. Add the Egg: Carefully crack an egg into the center of each pide and return to the oven.
  3. Final Baking: Bake for an additional 4-5 minutes until the egg is set.


Pastirma Notes:

  • Ensure the environment for air drying is sanitary to prevent contamination.
  • Fenugreek is essential for the authentic flavor of pastirma but can be adjusted according to taste.
  • This process requires patience and attention to conditions to ensure the best quality and safety of the cured meat.

Pide Notes:

  • Ensure the oven is fully preheated before baking for the best results.
  • The dough should be thin; if it tears, just pinch it back together.
  • Adding the egg later prevents it from overcooking.
  • Prep Time: 90 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Turkish
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