Gözleme is a traditional savory Turkish flatbread and pastry dish. The dough is usually unleavened, and made only with flour, salt and water, but gözleme can be made from yeast dough as well. It similar to bazlama, but is lightly brushed with butter or oil, whereas bazlama is prepared without fat. The dough is rolled thin, then filled with various toppings, sealed, and cooked over a griddle. Gözleme may also sometimes made from prepackaged hand-rolled leaves of yufka dough.
The name derives from the Turkish word göz, meaning “compartment”, in reference to the pocket of dough in which the various toppings are sealed and cooked.Typically, this is done over a sac griddle.
Toppings for gözleme are numerous and vary by region and personal preference, and include a variety of meats (minced beef, chopped lamb, fresh or smoked seafood, sucuk, pastirma), vegetables (spinach, zucchini, eggplant, leek, chard, various peppers, onion, scallion, shallot, garlic), mushrooms (porcino, chanterelle, truffle), tubers (potatoes, yams, radish), cheeses (feta, Turkish white cheese, lavaş, lor, çökelek, kaşar, kaşkaval), as well as eggs, seasonal herbs, and spices.
Originally a breakfast item or light homemade snack, the comfort food nature of gözleme has allowed it to achieve fast-food status iin the latter part of the twentieth century, with both simple and gourmet preparations ranging from the traditional (e.g. sauteed minced beef and onion, “kıymalı“; spinach and feta, “ıspanaklı“; potato and chive, “patatesli“; etc.) to the contemporary (e.g. chocolate and orange zest; walnut and banana with honey; smoked salmon and eggs; etc.) proliferating across the country’s restaurants, cafes, and food carts.