Sunday, March 1, 2009

Naan Bread

Naan bread has long been my nemesis. It's a traditional Indian bread similar to a pita, but much tastier. I never seem to be able to get it quite right. Maybe it's because I don't have a tandoori oven, fresh plain yogurt, or an Indian woman to show me how it's really done. Either way, I keep trying different recipes in hopes that one day I'll be satisfied. This recipe is easy and tastes fairly close to the real thing.

Naan Bread
Recipe from India's 500 Best Recipes
Pictures by Caroline

2 cups white flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon yeast
4 tablespoons warm milk
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 tablespoons plain yogurt
1 eggs
2-3 tablespoons butter, for brushing
  1. Sift the flour and salt together into a large bowl. In a smaller bowl, cream the yeast with the milk. Set aside for 15 mintues. Add the yeast and milk mixture, vegetable oil, yogurt and egg to the flour. Combine the mixture using your hands until it forms a soft dough (I got sick of kneading with my hands and used my Bosch mixer). Add a little lukewarm water if the dough is too dry.
  2. Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes, or until it feels smooth. Return the dough to the bowl, cover, and leave in a warm place for about 1 hour, or until it has doubled in size.
  3. Turn out the dough back on to the floured surface and and knead for a further 2 mintues. Divide into 3 equal pieces, shape into balls and roll out into teardrop shapes, about 1/3 inch thick.
  4. Preheat the broiler to its highest setting. Place the naan on preheated baking sheets and bake for 3-4 minutes, or until puffed up. You may want to flip the naan so that both sides are lightly browned. Brush with butter and serve warm.


Jessie said...

You weren't kidding when you said 3-4 minutes. I left these in the broiler for no more than 5 minutes, and they were pretty dark. Just the same, I quite liked the bread.

I served it with spinach tortellini salad. What a great dinner.

Jessie said...

This has become a regular bread for us. It is so easy and so good.

I have a question. Do you know of any reason this could not spend more than 1 hour rising? Could I mix up the dough early in the afternoon, leave it to rise, and then cook it a few hours later for dinner?

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