When Sarah was living in Amsterdam, she often used to buy delicious Turkish bread from a local bakery. After relocating back to the UK, she knew that these little Turkish bakeries weren’t as common. She often told me about the light, airy texture of this Turkish bread and how she sometimes missed it. One evening, she made a request: could I recreate this bread, so rich in texture, so soft and airy, and just perfect to be filled with fresh ingredients for lunch the next day?
Originating from Turkey, this bread is not just a staple but a symbol of rich culinary traditions. A key feature of Turkish bread is its thin crust and light texture. Good quality yeast plays a crucial role in achieving that airy, light texture, while the use of sesame seeds – both white and/or black – enhances its looks and flavour.
- 250 g bread flour
- 7 g instant dried yeast
- 200 ml water
- 4 tsp warm water
- 2 tsp caster/fine sugar
- 1 tsp fine salt
- 15 ml olive oil (for glazing)
- A handful of black and white sesame seeds
Kitchen Equipment Needed:
- Preparation: Begin by combining the flour, sugar, and salt in a large mixing bowl.
- Mixing: Make a well in the centre of the flour mix. Add the yeast here and then pour in the water. Dive in with your hands, merging the ingredients. Note: The dough will feel wet at this stage and may be a bit unwieldy.
- First Proving: Seal the bowl with cling film and let it rest for an hour or until you see the dough’s volume doubling.
- Shaping: On a floured surface, lay out the proven dough. Generously use flour to avoid any sticking. Shape the dough into a flat circle measuring about 2-3 cm in height.
- Second Proving: Transfer the shaped dough to an olive oil-greased baking tray. Cover it with a tea towel and let it rest, this time for 45 minutes. Meanwhile, get your oven heating to 250° C / 480° F.
- Design: As the dough rises, start by making a gentle inner circle with your fingertips, approximately 3 cm from its edge. Then, in the circle’s centre, imprint criss-cross patterns with roughly 2-3 cm between each line.
- Final Touches: With a pastry brush, lightly spread olive oil over the bread’s surface. Then, garnish with both black and white sesame seeds. Press these seeds a bit to ensure they adhere well.
- Baking: Place the bread in the preheated oven. Let it bake for 8 minutes at 250° C / 480° F. Then, reduce the oven temperature to 200° C / 390° F and continue baking for another 5 minutes or until you see a golden brown hue emerging.
There you have it! A fresh-baked Turkish bread like the ones from those little Turkish bakeries in Amsterdam. Slice it open, and you’re ready to fill with your choice of fresh ingredients. Enjoy!