I love all kinds of bread. Be that the free bread bowl from Cheesecake Factory or the Mrs. Baird’s white bread from Walmart. I can gorge on bread all day long.
I have never tried baking bread at home though, other than the oh-so-Bengali haat-e-banano-ruti (handmade chapatis). On our last trip back from India, we did a quick layover in Doha, you can know a lot more about it in here. Its an amazing place to say the least, and the food is great. But, what caught my attention was the naan-like flatbreads, they were super soft and was a great accompaniment to the kebab served at the local roadside stall in Souq Waqif.
I pestered the chef to get the recipe, and he gave me a recipe but with no measurements, so after some tweaking and experiments, I finally came up with my version of the flatbread.
Its very close in texture to the the Indian naan. But, has a much milder flavor. It is very soft and does not take much effort. The yeast does the job for you.
1-1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cumin powder
½ teaspoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon superfine sugar
1/8 oz active dry yeast, about half a packet
1 tablespoon olive oil
About 2 cups warm water
Sift together the flour, salt, cumin, and coriander into a bowl. Stir in the sugar and yeast. Make a well in the center and pour about a cup of lukewarm water. Stir well with your fingers until the dough starts to form. Knead and add more water if needed until it starts to leave the side of the bowl. Turn onto a lightly floured surface nd knead for about 10 mins until smooth and elastic
Brush oil on the sides of the bowl. Shape the dough into a ball and put it in there. Cover with a damp cloth or plastic wrap in a warm place for an hour. The dough should double in size
Punch the dough in the middle, transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead for 1-2 minutes. Cut into six equal portions. Shape each portion into small balls, and leave covered for 20 minutes.
Roll the dough balls into 8″ rounds. Heat a heavy bottom skillet, brush lightly with oil, place the flatbread, cover and cook for 2-3 minutes, until the bottom turns lightly brown in places. Turn and cook for another 2 -3 minutes.
Serve immediately with kebabs and humus or your choice of side.