Gözleme

Gözleme

Fried cheese parcels

By
From
Istanbul
Makes
4
Photographer
Steven Joyce

If you spy a woman sitting in the window of a café in Istanbul, wearing white and rolling circles of pastry out very thinly, stuffing, folding and cooking them on what looks like an upturned wok, the chances are she’s making gözleme, a stuffed and pan-fried street food snack. Often the pastry is folded into a large crescent shape around the filling, before being cooked on a rounded grill called a sac, then rolled up to serve, wrapped in paper. You can also fold gözleme into squares like envelopes before cooking, or serve it in slices for breakfast, which I like to do. They are very flat pastries, so don’t over-stuff them.

Dough

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
300g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
1 teaspoon salt

Filling

Quantity Ingredient
200g halloumi, (or hard mozzarella or cheddar)
1 small fresh red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped, or to taste
1 tablespoon flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
30g butter, melted, for brushing

Method

  1. Mix together the dough ingredients with about 200 ml water, to form a sticky dough (you may not need all the water). Knead for 10 minutes then place in a bowl and cover with a damp cloth or clingfilm (plastic wrap). Set aside for 20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare the filling. Finely chop or grate the cheese and mix with the remaining ingredients. Put your largest frying pan over a high heat.
  3. Divide the dough into quarters and on a floured work surface with a floured rolling pin, roll one out into a circle about 30 cm diameter and about 3 mm thick. If your frying pan is smaller than this then make 6 or 8 smaller gözleme. Scatter a quarter of the filling evenly over the bottom half of the semi-circle and lightly wet the edges. Fold the top half over the bottom half to make a half-moon shape and press to seal the pastry edges.
  4. Using a large spatula, carefully slide the sealed gözleme into the hot pan. Cook for 3–4 minutes, until little brown spots appear on the underside, then flip over. Brush the cooked top with a little melted butter. When the other side is covered with little golden-brown flecks too, and the pastry no longer appears damp or raw, again about 3 minutes, slide the gözleme out of the pan and keep warm while you make the rest.

Tip

  • Try these fillings. Quantities aren’t important but don't add too much as the pastries must be flattish once stuffed:

    – a handful of fresh spinach with crumbled feta

    – a little cooked and finely chopped potato, sweet potato or squash, with softened onion, fresh herbs and/or cheese

    – softened sliced leeks with dill

    – goat’s cheese and parsley

    – finely sliced mushrooms with spinach and toasted pine nuts

    – cooked spiced lamb or beef mince

    – cooked spicy sausage with cheese.
Tags:
Istanbul
Turkey
Turkish
Rebecca
Seal
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