While I love my adopted hometown in Peterborough, there is a serious lack of pide to be found. This kind of deprivation leads to innovation, it seems, and I've been struggling to re-create the pide of my youth ever since. If you are lucky enough to live by a pide restaurant, go there today! You wont be sorry. But if, like me, you are on your own - here is one of my favorite pide recipes.
This recipe is for a marinated, spiced lamb pide. There's lots going on in this one - clove, nutmeg, lemon and lots of cardamom. The result is a deeply savory, crumbly lamb topping that seems to win best-of-show every time I make it. When I make this in Peterborough, I often use ground goat from a local farmer I like. When I made this yesterday for a family pre-christmas gathering I used lamb. Both are delicious.
Spiced Lamb Pide
Makes 3 large Pide, enough to feed 4 with a salad
Crust: (in a pinch, you could use frozen pizza dough)
- 1 tablespoon fresh yeast
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 cup warm water
- 4 tablespoons yogurt
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tsp salt
- 4 cups flour
- Ground lamb or goat - 2 lb
- Garlic, minced - 4 cloves
- Salt - 2 teaspoons
- Pepper - 1 teaspoon
- Ground allspice - 1 teaspoon
- Ground cardamom - 1 teaspoon
- Ground cloves - 1/2 teaspoon
- Ground nutmeg - 1/2 teaspoon
- Yogurt - 1 cup
- Vinegar or lemon juice - 1/4 cup
1. Combine the yeast, sugar, warm water and yogurt, and mix. Let it sit for five minutes. If the yeast is healthy, you should see the mixture bubble, foam or rise in this period. Do not use yeast that isn't active at this stage.
2. Add the yeast mixture, flour, salt and oil. Knead until the dough is smooth and flexible.
3. Cover the dough and let it rise for one hour, or more.
4. When the dough has risen, punch it down, knead briefly and separate it into 3 balls (or more, if you want smaller pide). Let the dough rest for ten minutes. Pre-heat the oven to 360 degrees
5. Roll the dough out into a large oval on a well flowered surface. Then, fold in the sides to shape the dough into a large boat.
6. Place the dough on a cookie sheet and cook at 360 degrees until firm, about 15 minutes. While you are baking the dough, prepare the filling.
1. Mix all the ingredients together in a non-reactive bowl and set aside to marinate for anywhere from 1 hour to overnight.
2. When you put your pide dough in the over, start to cook the meat. This part is easy. Throw the marinated meat into a frying pan along with a tablespoon of butter on medium heat. Leave it on, stirring occasionally, until any liquids have cooked off.
3. When you put your pide dough in the over, start to cook the meat. This part is easy. Throw the marinated meat into a frying pan along with a tablespoon of butter on medium heat. Leave it on, stirring occasionally, until any liquids have cooked off.
4. Add cooked meat to fill in the 'boat'. Fill the dough right to the edges. Put lots in there, you won't be sorry.
5. Garnish with slices of feta cheese, and round sliced of tomato placed down the middle of the pide. Make it beautiful. Brush the crusts lightly with butter or olive oil.
6. Place the pide back in the oven for 15 minutes, or until the tomatoes are cooked through.
7. Remove from the oven and slice the pide into 5 or 6 strips, width-wise. I usually serve them on cutting boards, mostly for lack of any larger serving trays. But I think it looks nice too.