Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Garlic Naan

Yesterday, I posted the faux-tandoori chicken from last night's dinner, as well as the greens.  Today I'll put up the garlic naan and acknowledge that there was also rice. 

There are a ton of naan recipes floating around there, with wide-ranging ingredients and prep methods.  I read  a lot of them.  Some call for just flour and water, others are more complicated.  They're cooked in frying pans and on pizza stones, over open flames, etc.  The goal is fast high heat.

I started with two tablespoons of warm water and a teaspoon of honey, mixed together until well incorporated and then swished in a tablespoon of yeast and waited for it to get fluffy.  Then I added a half cup of whole wheat flour, a cup of white all purpose flour, two tablespoons of yogurt, a half a cup of milk, a pinch of salt and a half teaspoon of garlic powder.  And turned on the machine. 

It was sticky.  Shapeless.  Un-ballable.  I added a dusting of additional flour.  And another dusting.   I used close to two cups here, in total.  It was really sticky.   It was a very hot and humid day.   I rolled it into a sticky and imperfect ball, covered it and left it t rise for two hours. 

I don't have a picture of the risen ball, but it fluffed up nicely.   We divided it into five balls (aimed for six, got distracted).

The dough was still super sticky at this point, so the naan-balls went on a baking sheet spritzed with olive oil and covered with a towel. 

We preheated a cast iron stove-top grill to medium-high, and rolled the balls out flat.  I also melted some butter with grated garlic to brush on top of these mid-way through cooking.  I spritzed the grill with olive oil and laid on the naan.  It sizzled immediately, and began to bubble. 

After about two minutes, I flipped them over.  The first side had nice grill marks and the whole bread was starting to feel firm.  Of course, this will vary based on your cooking technique and temperature.

After both sides have light grill marks and it feels like cooked bread, brush on the garlic butter, flip the bread butter side down and grill another 30 seconds or so...flip again, brush again, flip garlic side down and give it another 30 seconds.   You want the bread to be white overall with grill marks. 

Mmm.  Naan.   This was super-soft and fluffy inside with the right amount of crisp on the surface. 

Also, there was rice.  But rice is rice. 

Onions, butter, garam masala.

Rinsed basamati rice.

Water, lid, simmer 25 minutes.  Peas. 

Serve with naan and mashed greens and faux-tandoori chicken. 

This recipe is cross-posted at the blog for the South Philly Food Co-op, whose mission is to open a member-owned cooperative grocery store that provides affordable and nutritious food to all residents of South Philadelphia while empowering the local community through sustainable practices, food-centric education, outreach, and community building.

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Garlic Naan
Flavorful and perfectly chewy-soft naan on the stovetop
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 2 tablespoons warm water
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 2 tablespoons low fat yogurt
  • 1/2 cup skim milk
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour (divided)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • dash kosher salt
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 tablespoons butter (melted)
Mix water and honey until well incorporated. Add yeast and let proof 10 minutes or until foamy.Add in all other ingredients - being cautious with the AP flour. Start with 1 cup AP flour and add more if needed. Knead by hand 10 minutes or in mixer for 5-7. Form into a ball. If too sticky, add more flour. Cover and let rise in a warm place for 2 hours until doubled. Mix butter and garlic, and warm. Divide into 6 or so balls. Roll out flat, to about a quarter inch thicknesss. Preheat stove top grill (or actual grill). Grease grill lightly. Grill each flatbread for 2 minutes or so until firm with grill marks. Flip over and grill other side. Then brush each with garlic butter and grill each side for another 30 seconds or so, until soft but crispy.
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 5 servings

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