Turkish Style Seed Topped Pide
This wonderfully light flatbread is brushed with a mixture of egg, yogurt and water and then topped with seeds before baking. This gives the needs something to stick to and the baked bread its golden color while also adding a crisp finish to the surface of the bread. I use a mixture of white sesame seeds and kalonji/onion seeds over the top, but you can also use white and black sesame seeds. Typically a “pide” has a crisscross pattern on the top, created by using your fingertips, but dimpling will also work.
Equipment: I use my 10-inch (26-cm)-diameter enamel roaster pan; you can use your roaster, Dutch oven or a large, round, covered pan of a similar size. Line your choice with good-quality parchment paper.
Makes1 standard loaf
- 30 grams (1/8 cup) active starter
- 200 grams (3/4 cup) water
- 30 grams (2 tbsp) olive oil
- 300 grams (2 1/2 cups) strong white bread flour
- 4 grams (1/2 tsp) salt, or to taste
- 1 large egg yolk
- 15 grams (1 tbsp) water
- 15 grams (1 tbsp) plain/natural yogurt
- 9 grams (1 tbsp) white sesame seeds
- 9 grams (1 tbsp) black onion/kalonji seeds
In the early evening, in a large mixing bowl, roughly mix together all the ingredients, except the toppings, until you have a shaggy, rough dough. Cover the bowl with a clean shower cap or your choice of cover and leave the bowl on the counter for 2 hours.
After the 2 hours, perform the first set of pulls and folds on the dough. This is a small dough and it will feel sticky at this point but will come together into a soft ball. Cover the bowl again and leave it on your counter.
After another 1 to 2 hours, do another set of pulls and folds on the dough; it will now be smooth and stretchy. Cover the dough again once completed.
Leave the covered bowl on the counter overnight, typically 8 to 10 hours, at 64 to 68°F (18 to 20°C).
The next morning, the dough will have doubled in size with a smooth surface, and will now be ready to make your pide. Either use the dough immediately, or place the bowl, untouched and still covered, in the fridge until you want to use it. If you stored it in the fridge, before you want to bake the bread, remove the bowl from the fridge and allow it to sit for 1 hour on the counter to let the dough come up to room temperature.
When you are ready, using the same pulling and folding action, pull the dough into a soft ball and place it smooth side up in the middle of your lined pan. Place the lid on the pan. Leave it on the counter for 2 to 3 hours. The dough will loosen and spread slightly.
When you are ready to bake, decide whether you would like to bake in a preheated oven or from a cold start. If preheating, set the oven to 400°F (200°C) convection or 425°F (220°C) conventional.
Wet your fingertips and firmly press the dough out to the edge of the pan so that it fills the base of your bread pan. Using wetted fingers again, press into the dough 1 inch (2.5 cm) from the edge of the dough all the way around to draw a circle in the dough, then use your fingertips to draw lines across the dough within that circle, creating a crisscross pattern. Mix the egg yolk, water and yogurt together well, and brush the mixture over the top of the dough. Sprinkle the seeds on top.
If you preheated the oven, put the lid on the pan and bake it for 15 minutes. If you are using a cold start, place the pan of dough in the oven, set the temperature as above and set a timer for 20 minutes. After this time, take the pan from the oven and carefully remove the bread from the pan, remove the paper and place the round bread directly onto the oven shelf, uncovered, and bake it for a further 10 minutes.
Remove the baked pide from the oven and let it rest on a rack briefly until you can handle it, cut it into pieces and serve.
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