Updated: 7 days ago
As I was researching the food in Israel, this dish somehow caught my attention. Maybe I am always intrigued by flatbread or bread in general, I mean, this looks like the famous Turkish Pide. But this is something else. Something exciting. This is supposed to be a stuffed meat pie, somewhat like quesadilla without all the cheese.
It has somehow evolved into a "pigeon", or "hamama" in Arabic, shaped open-faced flatbread. This is traditionally a pan-fried dough stuffed with minced or shredded meat, usually shredded lamb. This dish is originated from the Kurdish regions of Iraq, Syria and Southeastern Turkey. It was brought to Israel by the Kurdish Jews.
I decided to "veganize" it by switching out the meat for mushrooms and lentils. You can use any type of mushroom. You can also use chickpeas or fava beans instead of lentils, and as for the mashed sweet potatoes, you can use potatoes, pumpkin or carrots. Be sure they are mashed. Yes, it may sound odd, but as soon as you took the 1st bite, you will understand the existence of those mashed earthy vegetables in this flatbread. Without much delay, let's get started with the recipe.
Sweet Potatoes, 250g
Sea Salt, Pinch
Green Lentils, 1 Cup
Dried Mushrooms, 1 Cup
High Quality Olive Oil, 2 TBSP
Yellow Onion Finely Sliced, 1
Demerara Sugar, Pinch
Dried Thyme, Pinch
Smoked Paprika Pinch
Chili Powder, Pinch
Hexa Food's Sumac Powder, 1/4 TSP
Black Pepper, Pinch
Dried Mushroom Powder, Pinch
Vegetable Stock, 1/4 Cup
Parsley Coarsely Chopped, A Handful
Multi-Purpose Middle Eastern Dough, 4 Dough Balls
Sambal Hijau / Harissa / Shatta, For Spreading
High Quality Olive Oil, For Brushing
White & Black Sesame Seeds, For Garnishing
Sacha Inchi Oil / High Quality Olive Oil, Drizzle
Dried Parsley, For Garnishing
Cast Iron Skillet / Pan
Please visit my "How To Make Multi-Purpose Middle Eastern Dough" page for the recipe.
Please visit my "How To Make Sambal Hijau" page if you are using it.
Please visit my "How To Make Harissa" page if you are using it.
Preparing the fillings.
Peel and oblique slice sweet potatoes.
Submerge the sweet potatoes in a pot of water.
Season with salt.
Bring it up to a rolling boil.
Cook until the potatoes are fork tender.
Remove from heat and drain.
Return the sweet potatoes to heat and continue cooking.
*This process is to dry the sweet potatoes, thus making them marshy without excess liquid.*
Mash the potatoes with the back of a spatula. You can use a potato masher or a ricer.
Season with salt and pepper. Give it a final stir and set aside.
Soak the lentils in water for 1 hr. After 1 hr, drain the lentils and set them aside.
*Skip this step if you are using canned lentils.*
Soak the dried mushrooms in warm water for 1 hr. After 1 hr, drain and finely dice the mushrooms.
*Skip the soaking step if you are using fresh mushrooms.*
In a skillet over medium heat, add olive oil.
Once the oil is heated up, add in the onion.
Season with salt and sugar.
Saute. Add in thyme, paprika, chili and Hexa Food's Sumac Powder.
Saute until well combined.
Add in the mushrooms and lentils.
Season with salt, pepper and mushroom powder.
Saute until well combined.
Deglaze with vegetable stock and turn the heat down to low.
Cover and cook for 3 to 5 mins.
Add in parsley and saute to combine well.
Taste and adjust for seasonings for salt, pepper and mushroom powder.
Give it a final stir and set aside.
*Do not cook the ingredients for too long as they will be cooked further during the final baking process.*
Preparing the Shamburak.
Preheat oven to 200 degree celsius or 400 fahrenheit.
After the 15 mins bench rest, roll one of the dough into a long oblong shape, to about 1/8 inch thick.
Spread the mashed sweet potatoes onto the dough, leaving 1/4 inch of border.
Spoon the sambal hijau, harissa or shatta over the potatoes.
Lastly, add the mushroom-lentils mixture over the top.
*Be generous and make sure it is as high as a mountain. This will resemble the iconic "pigeon" shape of this flatbread.*
Fold both ends and pinch down to seal tightly.
Swifty, transfer onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
Brush the dough with olive oil. Sprinkle white and black sesame over the dough.
Repeat the steps for the remaining dough.
*While working on 1 dough, keep the rest covered to prevent them from drying out.*
Wack into the oven and bake for 20 mins or until the dough is golden browned.
Rotate at halfway mark for even browning.
Remove from oven and immediately drizzle some sacha inchi oil or olive oil over the fillings.
Sprinkle some parsley over the top.
Slice and serve immediately.
Soul food; hearty and yummilicious...