Ekmek is a light and slightly sour flatbread that tastes wonderful with Havarti cheese. It uses a starter which ferments for 4 days. I recommend using a pizza stone to bake the loaves on. If you've no pizza stone, cookie sheets will work also. The recipe seems complicated, but it's a lot easier than it appears.

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Recipe Summary

prep:
1 hr
cook:
40 mins
additional:
4 days
total:
4 days
Servings:
12
Yield:
2 loaves
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Ingredients

12
Original recipe yields 12 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • To make the starter: Place 1/2 cup flour and 1/4 cup water in a coverable bowl; stir well. Cover and let sit at room temperature overnight. The next day, add 1/2 cup flour and 1/4 cup water to the bowl. Cover and let sit at room temperature overnight. On the third day, add 1/2 cup flour and 1/4 cup water to the bowl. Cover and let sit at room temperature overnight.

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  • To make the dough: In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast and sugar in the warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.

  • Break the starter into small pieces and add it to the yeast mixture. Stir in 4 cups of flour and the salt. Stir in the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, beating well after each addition. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes. Sprinkle a little flour over the dough and then cover it with a dry cloth. Let it raise until double in size.

  • Put the dough back onto a lightly floured work surface and punch out the air. Divide the dough in half and knead each piece for 2 to 3 minutes. Shape each piece into a tight oval loaf. Sprinkle two sheet pans with corn meal. Roll and stretch two loaf until they are 15x12 inch ovals. Dust the tops of the loaves with flour. Cover with a dry cloth and let raise in a warm place until doubled in size. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).

  • Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes. Mist with water 3 times in the first 15 minutes. Loaves are done when their bottoms sound hollow when tapped. Let cool on wire racks before serving.

Nutrition Facts

6 calories; protein 0.6g 1% DV; carbohydrates 1g; fat 0.1g; cholesterolmg; sodium 390mg 16% DV. Full Nutrition

Reviews (12)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
09/21/2007
I had my first Ekmek while stationed in Turkey in the Army many years ago. This recipe is excellent but the wood fired ovens the Turks use give a different character that is impossible to match. Enterprising young men in Turkey buy baskets of fresh loaves and sell it on extablished delivery routes. Tenants in upper story apartments have baskets on cords or ropes that they lower from their balconies with the money and the vendor will take the money and put the loaves in for the customer to haul back up. Read More
(59)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 2 stars
08/11/2007
Very disappointed with the recipe. The taste and texture are nothing close to any Turkish breads I have ever eaten. And after living in Turkey for years and being married to a Turkish woman for even longer she even questioned the Turkish in the title. One additional note Ekmek is the name for all breads in Turkey it would be nice to know what kind of bread this really is... Read More
(34)
18 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 13
  • 4 star values: 4
  • 3 star values: 0
  • 2 star values: 1
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
09/20/2007
I had my first Ekmek while stationed in Turkey in the Army many years ago. This recipe is excellent but the wood fired ovens the Turks use give a different character that is impossible to match. Enterprising young men in Turkey buy baskets of fresh loaves and sell it on extablished delivery routes. Tenants in upper story apartments have baskets on cords or ropes that they lower from their balconies with the money and the vendor will take the money and put the loaves in for the customer to haul back up. Read More
(59)
Rating: 4 stars
06/04/2003
This was a nice bread to serve with soup.I served it with Harira(also very good)and it went well.Good crispy crust and soft inside.I only cooked it for a little over 20 min. and it was pretty well done. Read More
(37)
Rating: 2 stars
08/10/2007
Very disappointed with the recipe. The taste and texture are nothing close to any Turkish breads I have ever eaten. And after living in Turkey for years and being married to a Turkish woman for even longer she even questioned the Turkish in the title. One additional note Ekmek is the name for all breads in Turkey it would be nice to know what kind of bread this really is... Read More
(34)
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Rating: 5 stars
06/04/2003
It really wasn't all that hard to make. It tastes good chewy with a hard crust. I would make it again. Read More
(30)
Rating: 5 stars
12/21/2003
When a Lebanese friend suggested Middle Eastern food for our New Year's Eve party I decided to try this bread. It is was very good and not hard. Impressed everyone though when I mentioned how long I had been working on it! Definitely worth keeping. Read More
(26)
Rating: 5 stars
08/05/2006
Let me start off by saying that I am by No Means an experienced breadmaker-the extent of my knowledge comes from attempting to make a loaf of french bread about four years ago (unsuccessfully) So this recipe was a little bit of a gamble for me! and guess what? it is the most wonderful bread!!! my loaves came out of the oven about 20 minutes ago and I was in shock my result was a wonderfully textured bread with a nice chewy crispy crust and a wonderful fluffy center =) a few sidenotes I substituted an unbleached all purpose flour in place of the bread flour and the result seems just fine also the part of the recipe that says 'break starter into small pieces and drop into yeast mixture' definitely worried me because my starter wasn't breakable...it was more like flour and water soup but the end result was still wonderful! I'm currently enjoying it with a little butter and honey on top and I don't think I'll be able to make myself pay 5 for a loaf of gourmet bread at the store ever again after knowing I can make something better by myself at home! THANK YOU SO MUCH for this recipe! Read More
(22)
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Rating: 5 stars
01/30/2006
The bread is delicious. My husband loved it....just a shame one has to wait 4 days to enjoy it but it's worth the wait. It is not complicated at all; just have to remember to do each step each day and be able to plan ahead if you want this for a special dinner. Read More
(11)
Rating: 5 stars
11/01/2010
I've made this a couple times now and have made it into 1 large loaf and baked it in a cast iron covered pot that I preheated in the oven first 1/2 hr covered and 15 min uncovered. Chewy crust and mild sourdough flavour - yum! Read More
(9)
Rating: 5 stars
12/18/2005
This is a very good recipe! We served it with Pepper Havarti cheese and it was wonderful. We make it once a month. Read More
(9)