Lahmacun – Turkish flatbread

Categories: Ground beef recipes, Main courses

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Lahmacun - Turkish flatbread

Me and the kitchen are old-time lovers and one of my favorite things to make has always been yeast breads and pastries. I know it takes a bit of work but the result is always so worth it.
These are like little pita breads with meat. I used a little trick that makes the filling easier. Everything is documented in the photos below.
These came out great! They‘re so cute and the taste is incredible. I suggest doubling the recipe and freezing some for a later date. If you don’t have the patience to read through this all, you can skip ahead to the bottom line.

Makes 24 mini lahmajuns


500 g flour (half a kilo)
25 grams fresh yeast / 11 grams dry yeast
1 heaped Tbsp sugar
1 full tsp salt
80 ml oil (1/3 cup)
240 ml warm water (1 cup)

1 egg, beaten

For the meat filling:
400 grams ground beef
1 onion
2 cloves of garlic
2 carrots
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/3 tsp crushed chili flakes
Pinch of cinnamon
1 Tbsp chicken bouillon
Ground black pepper


1. Finely dice the carrot. Heat 2-3 Tbsp of oil in a pan and sauté the carrot for around two minutes. Chop the onion and add to the carrot and sauté until it starts to get golden. Chop the garlic and add to the onion to sauté briefly.

2. Break up the meat and add to the pan with the vegetables and cook for around 10 minutes while constantly stirring. Add the spices and cook for another two minutes. Remove from the heat. Prepare a plate lined with absorbent paper towel and transfer the meat to the plate. Leave it for a few hours. If you’re short on time, one hour is enough. Make sure that all the liquids have been absorbed by the paper towel.

3. To prepare the dough: Place all the ingredients in the bowl of a mixer and process until you get a smooth and soft dough. Transfer to a greased bowl, cover and let rise for 1.5-2 hours.

4. Roll out to a large and relatively thick layer, see the photos. Cut out 8 cm diameter rounds (it doesn’t have to be exact) and place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Let rise for around 20 minutes, then take a cup that is smaller in diameter (my trick) than the rounds and use the bottom of the cup to flatten an area in the middle of the rounds and let rise for another 10 minutes, then flatten again.

5. Brush the dough circles generously with the egg wash. Place a tsp of the filling in the middle and use your fingers to press down to secure the meat onto the dough. Let rise for around 15 minutes. Brush the entire dough and meat filling with the egg wash.

6. Preheat an oven to 180°C. Bake for around 20 minutes or until golden.

The bottom line for those who don’t have the patience to read through all the instructions:
Sauté all the filling ingredients and let drain on paper towels. Prepare the dough and let rise until it doubles in size. Roll it out, cut out circles and let rise. Flatten each round in the middle with the bottom of a small glass, let rise and flatten again.
Place a tsp of the filling in the middle and let rise. Bake in a 180°C oven until golden.

Good to know…
It’s best to prepare the meat filling the day before. Freezer-friendly. You can use red pepper instead of the carrot.

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