Turkish Borek

Kind of like lasagna, but without the tomatoes.

Jan 3 2018, 2:00pm

Photo by Farideh Sadeghin

Servings: 6-8
Prep: 20 minutes
Total: 1 hour 30 minutes


6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound|450 grams mild green peppers, such as cubanelles or anthems, stemmed, seeded and coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon Aleppo pepper
1 large yellow onion, diced
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 pounds|913 grams ground beef
3/4 cup|158 ml canola plus, more for brushing
5 large eggs
1 cup|250 ml whole milk
1 (16 ounce) package yulfka dough
2 tablespoons|15 grams nigella sativa(black cumin seeds)


1. In a large, deep skillet, heat the olive oil over moderate heat. Add the peppers, Aleppo, and onion, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about 10 minutes. Add the beef and cook until the liquid has evaporated, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Continue cooking over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened, about 15 minutes. Transfer the vegetables and meat to a bowl and let cool slightly.

2. Heat the oven to 400°F and lightly oil a 9-inch-by-13-inch baking dish.

3. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs the milk and 1/2 cup of the canola oil. Lay a sheet of yulfka on a work surface and brush with the egg mixture; repeat until you have a stack of 2 sheets. Transfer the stack to the baking dish and spread one-third of the beef mixture on top. Repeat the layering twice more with the brushed yulfka sheets and beef filling, then end with a stack of brushed yufka.

4. Trim the overhanging yulfka slightly and tuck it under itself. Brush any remaining egg mixture on top of the borek, top with the nigella sativa seeds and bake until golden, about 45 minutes. Let the borek rest for 20 minutes before serving.