Think of Lahmacun, a distinctive Lahamajoun, like a super-thin crispy Turkish dough (or Armenian), complemented by a mixture of ground meat with peppers, tomatoes, fresh herbs and earthy spices. Comes from the Arabic “lahma bi’ajeen”, which literally means “dough with meat”.
Lahmacun has two different components. Dough and meat icing.
Traditionally, Turkish lahmacun is made with minced lamb, but you can also use lean ground beef. What makes the topping special is the combination of flavours. In this lahmacun recipe, I use a food processor to create the topping. Ground lamb (or beef), mixed with sweet red peppers, shallots, garlic, tomato paste, fresh herbs, allspice, cumin, a dash of cinnamon, and a pinch of cayenne.
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon yeast
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup water (warm)
1 tablespoon olive oil.
1/2 sweet red pepper, cut into chunks
1 shallot, halved
2 garlic cloves, peeled
fresh parsley leaves with some stem
200 ground lamb or ground beef
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp ground allspice
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
4 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
lemon for later
Put the flour in a large mixing bowl. Add the yeast and salt and combine. In a small bowl, stir the olive oil together with the warm water. Make a pool in the middle of the flour with a spoon and pour the water and oil mixture into it. Blend the flour into the liquid by turning the dry edges into the centre.
Flour your working surface and your hands. Turn out the dough and knead it for about 15 minutes until the dough is soft and elastic.
Drizzle a little bit of olive oil inside the mixing bowl and spread it around with your fingers to oil the inside. Put the dough back in the bowl and cover it with a cloth or towel. Leave it in a warm place to rise for 30 to 45 minutes. The dough should rise to about double the size.
Prepare the meat mixture. In the large bowl of a food processor, fitted with the blade, add red peppers, shallot, garlic, and parsley, cinnamon, cumin. Pulse a few times to chop. To the mixture, add ground lamb (or beef). Season with spices and salt. Add tomato paste and extra virgin olive oil. Now pulse again until well-combined (about 8 to 10 pulses.)
Bake in a hot oven until the dough is crisp, and the beef is cooked well. Squeeze a little lemon juice on top.
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