Sunday, May 15, 2011

Turkish Pogaca rolls (Spicy meat filled rolls)

For Turkish people, pogaca rolls and simit are what a cup of Joe is to the Western people which they buy at their favourite coffee shop on their way to work every morning. A typical Turkish breakfast is never complete without them. Whether you have time for a traditional Turkish breakfast or not, you always drop by the nearest bakery shop and  buy some pogaca rolls or simits. They are rich in fat and perhaps that's why super tasty and irresistible. Unfortunately, here in Bosnia, it is almost impossible to find typical Turkish pogaca rolls at bakery shops but thanks to my mom's recipe I'm always ready to bake some. To make them low-fat as much as possible, I adapted mom's recipe this time and used vegetable oil instead of butter/margarine and also added some whole grain flour. You can fill them with whatever ingredients you have on hand: minced with with onions, cheese and green vegetables, potatoes, olive paste, even with chocolate cream. They are soft and slightly sweet rolls. You can always vary the herbs/ spices for a different flavour.


approx.500g plain flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
3 teaspoons of salt
3 teaspoons of sugar
1 scant tablespoon of active dry yeast
1 cup milk
1/2 cup water
3/4 cup vegetable oil
300g minced beef
2 medium onions, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
Some vegetable oil
salt and black pepper
To glaze:
1 large egg yolk beaten 
sesame and black cummin seeds for sprinkling
1. Heat the milk and water in a small saucepan till just warm. Dissolve yeast in this warm mixture with sugar and salt. Let stand until creamy looking about 5 minutes. Add the vegetable oil. Make sure all you've had the ingredients at room temperature.
2. In a large bowl add the flour to the yeast milk water mixture and knead for approx. 10 mins. Sprinkle with a little extra flour if it's too sticky. The dough should be quite soft so don't be tempted to add too much extra flour whilst kneading.
3. Place the dough in an oiled bowl and cover with a sheet. Allow to rise in a warm place for at least one hour (it should more than double in size).

4. While the dough is rising prepare the filling. Add a small drizzle of vegetable oil to a large frying pan.
5. Fry the onions and garlic over a low heat till soft.
6. Add the minced meat and fry till meat is cooked (it doesn't have to brown).
7. Sprinkle in the spices and fry for another minute or so.
8. Pour the mixture onto a large plate and allow to cool down.   
10. Once the dough has finished rising, punch down and knead gently for a minute or two then divide the mixture into balls.
11. Roll each ball out into a disc shape (approx. 3mm thick). Place the disc on your hand or the counter and fill with approx 1 heaped tbsp of the filling.
12. Draw the dough around the filling making sure that the filling is comletely encased in the dough.

13. Place seam side down on a baking parchment lined baking tray.
14. Once you've finished shaping all the rolls brush them with the glaze and sprinkle with the black cummin seeds or sesame.

15. Allow to rest for approx 15 minutes. In the meantime, heat the oven to approx. 200C.
16. Bake the rolls for 15-20 mins, till nice and golden.

17. Serve warm.


  1. Hi.. I just finished making those yummy little things.. they are delicious.. thanks for the recipe :) can't wait to have them for lunch today with some tea..

  2. Hello! You made me really happy by giving me some feedback! Also glad your little things :) came out delicious too! By the way, tea is a great idea to accompany them :) Bon appetit!