Medfouna is a Moroccan Arabic word which means "buried." In this recipe, the name refers to a stuffed Berber flatbread, sometimes referred to as "Berber pizza."
Medfouna usually has a meat stuffing, but this version features a vegetarian filling of onions, olives and herbs. Adjust the seasoning to make it as spicy as you like.
I've prepared the medfouna as a single large Berber pizza, but you can make two smaller ones if you prefer. In that case, divide the dough into four sections rather than two.
Also try Medfouna Rissani with a traditional meat and herb filling.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Rising time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour, 55 minutes
Yield: One 13" Stuffed Pizza
- For the Dough
- 4 cups flour (some wheat, if desired)
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon yeast
- 1 1/4 cups warm water
- For the Filling
- 2 lbs. (about 900 g) onions, chopped
- 1 bell pepper (any color), chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 to 1 1/2 cups pitted green olives, sliced
- 2 handfuls of fresh parsley, chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh (or 2 teaspoons dry) za'atar or thyme
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper (or to taste)
- salt (to taste)
- pepper (to taste)
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar (optional)
- olive oil, salt, herbs for garnish (optional)
Make the Dough
Mix the flour, sugar and salt in a bowl. Make a large well in the center of the flour mixture, and add the yeast.
Add the olive oil and the water to the well, mixing to dissolve the yeast first, and then stirring the entire contents of the bowl to incorporate the water into the flour.
Turn the dough out onto a floured surface, and begin kneading the dough. If necessary, add flour or water in very small amounts to make the dough soft and pliable, but not too sticky. Continue kneading for 10 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic.
Divide the dough into two portions and shape each into a smooth circular mound. Lightly oil the dough with olive oil, cover with a towel, and leave to rise for about 45 minutes.
Make the Filling
In a large skillet, saute the onions and bell pepper in the olive oil about 7 minutes, or until the onions are crisp-tender and slightly reduced in volume.
Remove the onions from the heat. Stir in the olives, herbs and spices. Taste, adjust seasoning as desired, adding the sugar if the onions are slightly bitter. Set the filling aside.
Stuff the Berber Pizza
Preheat an oven to 435°F (225°C).
Roll out a portion of the risen dough into a large circle about 14" in diameter. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled baking sheet or pizza pan.
Spread the onion filling in the center, leaving at least 1/2" of dough exposed all around. Brush the exposed edge of dough with a little water.
Roll out the remaining portion of dough into another circle. Place it over the filling, and press the edges of the dough together to seal. Gently turn under the edges all around to complete the seal and give a nice look to the edge.
If desired, brush a little olive oil on the dough and sprinkle with dried herbs and a little coarse salt. Bake in the preheated oven until well colored, about 20 minutes. Remove to a rack to cool slightly. Serve warm.