I’ll give you no claims as to authenticity, but I will say that this vegan take on Turkey’s version of pizza is flipping delicious, and perfect for a quick supper.
Here I’ve used a wholemeal Turkish-style flatbread from the supermarket to top with fresh and quickly sauteed ingredients so that you can have dinner on the table in less than 20 minutes. By all means make it a bit more authentic by using lamb mince (or even naturally-lean turkey mince), but this vegan version fooled my family into eating a not so popular (in our house anyway) vegan ingredient and asking for more. Result!
The authentic way to eat lahmacun is rolled up, so as well as a big mixed salad you could do with offering plenty of napkins, too. Okay, maybe only if you are messy like me. Enjoy, and have a wonderful, healthy week ahead.
Spicy Turkish Flatbread Pizza
Use a wholemeal/wholewheat flatbread for added fibre, but even with white flatbread this thin, tangy-spicy pizza has fibre from healthy, protein-packed tempeh and the vegetables. And, if you are making this for those averse to spice, just use slightly thinned tomato puree, or plain tomato sauce as the toppings are mild and fragrant. In other words, perfect for kids. xx
150g tempeh, defrosted if frozen (which it is in the UK)
1 tbsp + 2 tsp olive oil or organic rapeseed oil, divided use
1 red onion, divided use
1/2 tbsp each cumin seeds and fennel seeds (or 1 tbsp cumin seeds), lightly crushed
rounded 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon (more to taste)
Handful of kale, washed and ripped up into large bite-sized pieces
2 wholemeal flatbreads – I used the wonderful (and no funny ingredients) Crosta & Mollica brand available at Waitrose
2 heaped tbsp best quality harissa paste (here is a recipe for my rose harissa paste – we LOVE it and use it loads; I keep little bags of it in the freezer)
2 tsp red wine vinegar, optional
1 tsp Aleppo pepper, optional
Double handful of cherry tomatoes, sliced or halved as you wish
Handful of fresh parsley, chopped
Optional: Turkish yogurt, to serve; fried capers, to serve
1. Preheat the oven to 200C fan/220C/400F.
2. Slice the tempeh into about 6 planks and steam for 8 minutes. This step makes the tempeh much softer and less chewy. Let the tempeh cool a bit, then crumble with your hands and set aside.
3. Heat the oil in a saute pan, finely chop half of the onions, and add to the oil. After three minutes add the spices and a good pinch of salt, along with the tempeh crumbles. Saute for about five minutes. Scrape into a bowl and cover to keep warm.
4. Wipe the pan and add 1 teaspoon of the remaining oil. Add the torn kale to the hot oil and saute until wilted and glossy.
5. Lay the flatbreads on a baking sheet and slather with the harissa paste. Divide the tempeh mixture between the breads and place in the hot oven for five minutes. While the bread is in thinly slice the remaining onion half and place in a small bowl with tomatoes, the last teaspoon of oil, Aleppo pepper and vinegar, if using.
6. Immediately the pizzas are taken from the oven top with the sauteed kale, raw onions, tomatoes and parsley. A drizzle of best olive oil would be welcome too. I forgot the parsley for the pics but I did add some little yellow broccoli flowers from my own, overblown, plants.
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