Turkish Pide with Eggplant and Tomatoes

Shaping our canoe-shaped Turkish flatbreads on parchment paper makes them easy to transfer to a baking stone.

Turkish Pide with Eggplant and Tomatoes
MAKES 6 pide, serving 6 to 8 VEG
WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS Pide is a Turkish flatbread that can be easily identified by its signature canoe shape. Like Italian pizza, pide varies from region to region and even from family to family, so the first task in developing our recipe was to identify what we liked. First, we focused on the dough. We tested a few traditional recipes and found that tasters preferred a cold-fermented dough with a crisp outer crust and chewy, irregular interior. Next, we turned to toppings. Tasters loved the classic Turkish combination of eggplant, red bell pepper, and tomatoes. We found that salting the eggplant was unnecessary since sautéing the veggies eliminated any excess moisture. Pulsing canned whole tomatoes in the food processor gave our topping the best texture. We accented the vegetables with smoky paprika and spicy red pepper flakes, a healthy amount of mint, and some briny, creamy feta. Shaping the pide on individual parchment sheets made transferring the little boats to our preheated baking stone easy and efficient. It is important to use ice water in the dough to prevent it from overheating in the food processor. We recommend King Arthur brand bread flour. Press and roll the remaining 3 dough balls into ovals while the first set of pide bake, but don’t top and shape the pide until right before baking. Some baking stones can crack under the intense heat of the broiler; be sure to check the manufacturer’s website.

3 cups (16½ ounces) bread flour
2 teaspoons sugar
½ teaspoon instant or rapid-rise yeast
1⅓ cups ice water
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1½ teaspoons salt

1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound eggplant, cut into ½-inch pieces
½ red bell pepper, chopped
Salt and pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
6 tablespoons minced fresh mint
6 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (1½ cups)

1. FOR THE DOUGH Pulse flour, sugar, and yeast in food processor until combined, about 5 pulses. With processor running, slowly add ice water and process until dough is just combined and no dry flour remains, about 10 seconds. Let dough rest for 10 minutes.
2. Add oil and salt to dough and process until dough forms satiny, sticky ball that clears sides of bowl, 30 to 60 seconds. Transfer dough to lightly oiled counter and knead by hand to form smooth, round ball, about 30 seconds. Place dough seam side down in lightly greased large bowl or container, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 24 hours or up to 3 days.
3. FOR THE TOPPINGS Pulse tomatoes and their juice in food processor until coarsely ground, about 12 pulses. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add eggplant, bell pepper, and ½ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and beginning to brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in garlic, pepper flakes, and paprika and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
4. Add tomatoes, bring to simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture is very thick and measures 3½ cups, about 10 minutes. Off heat, stir in ¼ cup mint and season with salt and pepper to taste; let cool completely before using.
5. One hour before baking, adjust oven rack 4 inches from broiler element, set baking stone on rack, and heat oven to 500 degrees. Press down on dough to deflate. Transfer dough to clean counter and divide in half, then cut each half into thirds (about 4¾ ounces each); cover loosely with greased plastic. Working with 1 piece of dough at a time (keep remaining pieces covered), form into rough ball by stretching dough around your thumbs and pinching edges together so that top is smooth. Space balls 3 inches apart, cover loosely with greased plastic, and let rest for 1 hour.
6. Cut six 16 by 6-inch pieces of parchment paper. Generously coat 1 dough ball with flour and place on well-floured counter. Press and roll into 14 by 5½-inch oval. Arrange oval on parchment rectangle and reshape as needed. (If dough resists stretching, let it relax for 10 to 20 minutes before trying to stretch it again.) Repeat with 2 more dough balls and parchment rectangles.
7. Brush dough ovals with oil, then top each with ½ cup eggplant mixture and ¼ cup feta, leaving ¾-inch border around edges. Fold long edges of dough over filling to form canoe shape and pinch ends together to seal. Brush outer edges of dough with oil and transfer pide (still on parchment rectangles) to pizza peel.
8. Slide each parchment rectangle with pide onto baking stone, spacing pide at least 1 inch apart. Bake until crust is golden brown and edges are crisp, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer pide to wire rack, discard parchment, and let cool for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon mint, slice, and serve. Repeat with remaining 3 dough balls, 3 parchment rectangles, oil, and toppings.

Shaping Turkish Pide

1.Press and roll 1 dough ball into 14 by 5½-inch oval on well-floured counter. Arrange oval on parchment rectangle and reshape as needed.

2.Brush oval with oil, then top with ½ cup eggplant mixture and ¼ cup feta, leaving ¾-inch border around edges.

3.Fold long edges of dough over filling to form canoe shape and pinch ends together to seal. Brush outer edges of dough with oil.