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Staple Algerian flatbread: Bouzgene Berber Bread

Staple Algerian flatbread: Bouzgene Berber Bread

The classic Algerian dish "Bouzgene" has a long history in the country's culinary culture. The core of Bouzgene is its ability to combine many ingredients into a harmonious and delicious dinner, even if precise recipes may vary among areas and families.

The historical and cultural influences that have moulded Algerian cuisine over the years can be linked to Bouzgene's origins. The Berber, Arab, Ottoman, and French civilisations have all had a considerable impact on Algeria's culinary scene, which is reflected in the variety of flavours and ingredients used in traditional Algerian cuisine.

It showcases the ingenuity of Algerian chefs who used readily available resources in their region to make filling and savoury dishes that supported families and communities.

Preparation Time

1 hour and 50 minutes



2 pounds semolina

3 cups water

4 tablespoons olive oil

2 red bell peppers

4 tomatoes

4 cloves garlic (chopped)

1 jalapeno pepper (chopped)




  • Place red bell peppers and tomatoes on a baking sheet, and roast under a broiler for about 8 minutes. 
  • Cool, and then scrape the skins off of the tomatoes and peppers.
  •  Place them in a large bowl. Remove cores and seeds from the bell peppers.
  • Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the jalapenos and garlic, and cook for a few minutes. 
  • Remove from heat, and transfer the garlic and jalapeno to the bowl with the tomatoes and red peppers. 
  • Using two sharp steak knives, cut up the tomatoes and peppers to a coarse and soupy consistency. Stir, and set sauce aside.
  • Place the semolina in a large bowl, and stir in salt and 4 tablespoons of olive oil. 
  • Gradually add water while mixing and squeezing with your hand until the dough holds together and rolls into golf ball size.
  • For each round, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. 
  • Fry the rolled dough in the hot skillet until golden brown. Remove from the skillet, and wrap in a clean towel to drain excess oil. Repeat the process.
  • Scoop the bread into the sauce, and enjoy!