Nutrition and Fitness with Randa
2Aug/105

Turkish Pide Pizza and Cold Yogurt Cucumber Soup

Ramazan is a good friend of mine who I met in Turkey years ago and is now spending time in our hometown with his wonderful wife. He the pastor of a church in Antalya, Turkey and has a heart of gold - and a love for good food! I will never forget my first experience eating delicious pide pizza at an outdoor restaurant one warm summer evening in southern Turkey - it was brought out steaming on a wooden board and set in the middle of the table, and if my memory serves me correctly, I polished it off and ordered another one!

Ramazan offered to teach me how to make this popular pizza and its refreshing counterpart, cacik, a cold yogurt and cucumber soup. I was especially intrigued when I learned he had worked at a pide shop when he was younger! I learned from a pro!

I think the pizza would be wonderful cut up and served as appetizers at a party, taken on a picnic, nibbled on for a snack - hot or cold, or eaten for dinner with the soup, as we did. (The kids loved that their pizza looked like a boat!) It is fun to make and even more enjoyable to eat.

"The Turkish Cuisine has the extra privilege of being at the cross-roads of the Far-East and the Mediterranean, which mirrors a long and complex history of Turkish migration from the steppes of Central Asia (where they mingled with the Chinese) to Europe (where they exerted influence all the way to Vienna). All these unique characteristics and history have bestowed upon the Turkish Cuisine a rich and varied number of dishes.....The Cuisine is also an integral aspect of culture. It is a part of the rituals of everyday life events. Anyone who visits Turkey or has had a meal in a Turkish home, regardless of the success of the particular cook, is sure to notice how unique the Cuisine is."  - www.turizm.net

INGREDIENTS for Pide Pizza with Meat

  • Dough (enough for 6 pizzas)
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 large green peppers, chopped
  • Cumin, red pepper, salt and pepper (add to your liking)
  • 1.5 lbs lean ground beef
  • 6 medium tomatoes, chopped and seeded

INGREDIENTS for Cacik (Cold Cucumber Yogurt Soup)

  • 3 cups plain Greek yogurt or regular yogurt
  • Chilled water to thin
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tbsp dill, dried
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 cucumbers, peeled and grated
  • Dried mint and olive oil

Pide Pizza, just like the Turks eat it!

Cacik, cold yogurt soup with cucumber and mint

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