Recipes, Lamb Recipes, Sausage Recipes

Lamb merguez sausage meat flatbreads

Swaledale Butchers’ wonderfully spiced and complex Lamb Merguez Sausage Meat baked into a beautifully airy flatbread, from a dough that is allowed to rise slowly for extra integrity. Not quite a pizza, but nearly.

I find this such a satisfying recipe to conquer. Bread, in general, is a gratifying process. I think it is that understanding and appreciation of a process, of all the steps being important to the outcome. Also, that sense of trepidation and mild anxiety about whether the dough translates to good bread — only at the last minute, when you break into the bread, will you actually know if you can claim victory.

This bread here is on the easier end of the dough spectrum, but no less satisfying to eat — especially as the fat seeps out of the merguez meat and into the soft spongy bread.

Serves 6


For the bread

For the toppings


The first thing to tackle is the bread:

  1. Tip the yeast into a small jug or bowl and add about 50ml of the water. Stir well and leave to one side for 5 minutes, so that the yeast can activate.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, place the flour, semolina, and the remaining water, plus the yeast and water mix. Mix all this together with your hands until you have formed a rough dough. Then cover the bowl with a damp cloth and leave to one side for 20 minutes.
  3. Add the salt and water mixture to the dough and mix once more with your hands until all the water is incorporated. Re-cover with the cloth and leave for 30 minutes.
  4. You are now going to begin the process of ‘folding’ the dough. Wet your hands with a splash of water, so that the dough doesn’t stick to your fingers, and take the dough from the opposite side of the bowl. Pull the dough up into the air, stretching it but without tearing it, and then fold it over, back onto the main body of the dough. Rotate the bowl by 90° and repeat the ‘folding’ process until the bowl has complete 360°. So essentially splitting the bowl into quarters.
  5. Re-cover with the damp cloth and leave for 30 minutes.
  6. Then repeat steps 4 and 5 until you have done the folding process four times in total.
  7. After the final fold, cover the dough once more with the cloth and leave for a further 30 minutes.
  8. Tip the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and using a dough scraper, portion to about 90g. Once portioned, take a piece of dough and try to form it into a tight ball — cup your hands slightly and create a bit of friction between the dough and the work surface. Use a kind of scooping motion to form the dough into a ball and create a little tension in the surface. Place the dough on a lightly floured tray.
  9. Repeat the process until all the dough portions are in nice, tight balls. Cover the tray with a damp cloth, place it in the fridge, and leave overnight.

The following day:

  1. Take the shallot and, using a sharp knife, slice it into rings approximately the thickness of a 20-pence piece. Place in a bowl and season with sea salt, then squeeze over the juice of half a lemon.
  2. Place the yoghurt in a bowl and season with a good pinch of sea salt and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Stir well.
  3. Preheat the grill part of your oven to the hottest setting it has, and fit an oven shelf as close as it will go to the grill.
  4. Place a frying pan or cast-iron skillet over a high heat.
  5. Take a ball of dough out of the fridge and place it on a heavily floured work surface. Either with your hands or with a rolling pin, stretch the dough to about the thickness of a 50-pence piece.
  6. Scatter little nuggets of the merguez sausage meat over the dough, being careful to leave a little space at the edge of the dough for a crust.
  7. Slide the dough onto a pizza paddle and then slide it off the paddle into the hot pan. The idea here is to re-create the fierce heat that you get from a woodfired stone-based oven.
  8. Then transfer the skillet to the shelf under the grill. Cook for approximately 2 minutes.
  9. Remove the skillet from the oven and slide the flatbread onto a chopping board. Spoon on a few dollops of the seasoned yoghurt and then scatter over a few of the shallot rings, a pinch each of the mint and coriander, a pinch of chilli flakes, a tiny squeeze of lemon and then, finally, a little pinch of salt.
  10. Cut into quarters and enjoy.
  11. Repeat the process until all the dough is cooked or you are full!

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