I have been a pizza lover since I was a child. I’ve eaten pizza in New York, Chicago and all over the USA. I’ve eaten it in Italy and France and the U.K., too.
I’ve had every kind of pizza from gourmet to frozen to home delivery-style. After all these years of enjoying pizza, I’ve found a new love. It’s Turkey’s version of pizza, called ‘pide’ (pee-DEH’).
All the elements are the same as the Italian-inspired pizzas we know so well. Soft , fresh dough that’s crunch on the outside and fluffy white and yeasty on the inside, delicious cheese and toppings all baked to perfection on a wooden slab.
So what makes Turkish ‘pide’ so different and delicious? First and foremost, it’s the cheese. ‘Pide’ comes from the Black Sea region of Turkey that’s famous for it’s rich cheeses and dairy products. Only a special kashar cheese from the coastal city of Trabzon is used for making ‘pide.’
Secondly, the toppings are slightly different. There is no tomato sauce on Turkish ‘pide.’ The cheese is spread directly on the dough. Then different toppings are used over the cheese, like bits of lamb, ground beef, vegetables like peppers and spinach.
Often, folks will ask to have an egg cracked on top, too. And some varieties have no cheese at all. Only meat, veggies and herbs. Melted butter is drizzled or brushed over the dough. Need I say more?
Go ahead and pass up classic pizza for once and give Turkish ‘pide’ a try. Like me, you’ll fall in love.