Naan is an oven baked flatbread made with yeast. These flatbreads are by far my favorite kind of flatbread. They are so easy to make, the ingredients are always in my pantry, they look so adorable, but also these beauties are extremely delicious. This flatbread is so elastic, soft and airy, with a lovely buttery and toasted sesame seed flavor. It is such a rustic bread and yet so sophisticated. The technique is quite simple and the active part takes no more than 20 minutes. The passive part, the part when the dough rests or rises is the most challenging part, if you will. It takes about 2 hours to rise, so this recipe isn’t the most suitable if you are in a hurry. But if you have some time to spare, trust me, the result is so rewarding and surely it is worth waiting every minute.
- 300g all-purpose flour + 35g extra (for kneading) – 10.6 oz + 1.25 oz
- 125ml lukewarm water – 36-40°C – ½ cup
- ½ package active dry yeast (4g)
- 25g brown sugar – 2 Tbsp
- 15 ml milk – 1 Tbsp
- 4g sea salt – 1 tsp
- 1 small egg (30g) – or half of a large one
- 30 butter – 2 Tbsp
- 9g black sesame seeds – 1 Tbsp
- In a small bowl combine water, sugar and yeast and let aside for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes the mixture should be foamy.
- In a large bowl combine white flour (sifted) and salt and make a well in the center. Add the yeast mixture, the egg and milk and mix with a wooden spatula until you form a ball.
- Bring the dough on a floured working surface and knead it for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, the dough should be smooth (picture).
- Place dough in the bowl, cover and let it rise in a warm place for about 1 hour or until doubled in size (picture).
- After 1 hour place the dough back on the working surface and knead vigorously to knock out the air bubbles. Form a ball and cut it into 8 triangles (half the ball, half the halves and half the quarters) (picture).
- Take a triangle, connect two angles and form a small ball. Proceed the same with the remaining triangles (picture).
- Place the small balls on a parchment paper-lined baking tray, cover with a clean towel and let it rise for another 30 minutes or until doubled in size.
- After 30 minutes place a ball of dough on a floured working surface and deflate it with a rolling pin. Sprinkle with sesame seeds (about 1/8 Tbsp) and continue rolling the dough until 0.5 – 0.7cm (0.20 – 0.30 inch) thick. If you sprinkle the sesame seeds when the naan is already flatten, they would not stick to the dough, and they would fall in the skillet.
- Heat a medium skillet on medium heat and place the naan seed side up. Cook for 2 minutes, or until light brown on the bottom, turn over and cook for another 2 minutes.
- Place the flatbreads on a plate, one on top of the other. Brush them on both sides with melted butter. Enjoy with stews or with different kind of spreads.