Ekmek Turkish Bread

    1 hour 40 min

    Ekmek is a light and slightly sour flatbread that tastes wonderful with 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, baking trays will work also. The recipe seems complicated, but it's a lot easier than it appears.

    28 people made this

    Serves: 12 

    • 200g bread flour, divided
    • 180ml water, divided
    • 5 teaspoons dried active baking yeast
    • 1 teaspoon caster sugar
    • 500ml warm water (45 degrees C)
    • 820g bread flour
    • 2 teaspoons salt
    • 4 to 8 tablespoons polenta (cornmeal), as needed

    Prep:1hr  ›  Cook:40min  ›  Ready in:1hr40min 

    1. To make the starter: Place 1/3 of the flour and 60ml water in a coverable bowl; stir well. Cover and let sit at room temperature overnight. The next day, add another 1/3 of the flour and 60ml water to the bowl. Cover and let sit at room temperature overnight. On the third day, add the final 1/3 of the flour and 60ml water to the bowl. Cover and let sit at room temperature overnight.
    2. To make the dough: In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast and sugar in the warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.
    3. Break the starter into small pieces and add it to the yeast mixture. Stir in 550g of flour and the salt. Stir in the remaining flour, 70g 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 rise until double in size.
    4. 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 baking trays with poletna (cornmeal). Roll and stretch two loaves until they are approximately 40x30cm ovals. Dust the tops of the loaves with flour. Cover with a dry cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 220 C / Gas mark 7.
    5. 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.

    Recently viewed

    Reviews & ratings
    Average global rating:

    Reviews in English (14)


    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.  -  20 Sep 2007  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    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.  -  04 Apr 2002  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    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...  -  10 Aug 2007  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)