Friday, June 19, 2009

Faker Naan

We've been doing a lot of Moroccan food around these parts lately, a LOT. While you're desperately trying to pass the time waiting for that post, why don't you practice mastering the flatbread that is most certainly necessary to any Middle Eastern meal?

Because I may be a genius, I took the Moroccan bread recipe from Paula Wolfert's classic Moroccan cookbook and adapted it to Zoe Francois' brilliant no-knead method. The result? Easy-as-pie flatbread, with really no effort. You just need a little patience.

No-knead Flatbread
Takes about 2 1/2 hours

3/4 cup warm milk
3/4 cup warm water
1 1/2 tsp yeast
1 Tbsp salt
1 Tbsp sugar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 cups white flour
olive oil
  • Combine milk, water, yeast, salt, sugar and garlic in a big bowl or food container. Stir in flour until well mixed. Cover lightly with plastic and walk away. For two hours. That's it. I took pictures so you would believe me. Before (left) and after (right):

  • Ok, after 2 hours, dump your dough out onto a really well-floured surface. With well-floured hands, divide into 4 (or as many as 8) balls. Roll or press into 1/2-inch thick rounds. Let rest while your pan heats up.
  • Heat a heavy skillet, preferably cast iron, till hot and smoky. Brush one side of bread with olive oil and place oiled-side-down in pan. It will bubble and rise. Brush the other side with oil. When you can move it with tongs (1-2 minutes) but before it's fully charred, flip and cook one minute more.
  • Repeat until all dough is cooked, keeping cooked flatbreads wrapped in a clean kitchen towel (for softness).
  • Eat warm!

You know what else you really need with this? A cucumber yogurt sauce. Take 1/2 cup plain yogurt, stir in 1 Tbsp finely chopped cucumber and 1-2 tsp (depending on your taste) finely chopped red onion. If you have fresh mint, chop that up and throw it in too. Season with plenty of salt and dippity-doo-dah!

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