BM# 75: A-Z Bake Around the World: Day 14
Bake of the Day: N for Naan-e-Barbari
We start the third week of non-stop blogging today. Can’t believe we have crossed the half way point and will be done in couple of weeks. I have had a fun time baking all these delicious sweet and savory dishes. This baking marathon does come with a huge challenge. Who is going to eat all this food?? When I cook I scale down the recipe to feed 1~2 people, even though when I write the recipe, I write it to serve 4~6. With my husband traveling most of the time and the kids being kids — I can’t always bake the entire recipe if it’s just for us.Baking is a science which requires precise measurement and following instructions. I gets very tricky halving or quartering a recipe. Luckily some recipes are easy to scale down, like these cornbread muffins — I made only half the recipe and made 6 muffins that my son and I ate for about 2~3 days. My policy is to finish one before I make another dish. So you can imagine how much planning went into the whole mega marathon baking.Today’s recipe for Naan-e-Barbari is from Hot Bread Kitchen cookbook. It is a dramatic looking bread with a defining characteristic oblong shape. Apart from that, its surface is spread with roomal, a flour and water paste, before baking, which puts a layer of moisture right on the surface of the bread.
The dough for the Naan-e-barbari bread is great to make pizzas too. So I baked this when one of my friend’s daughter came home for a play date. Since all the kids love pizza, I planned to make it for them that day. I made the full recipe and then made 1 Naan-e-barbari bread and the other into pizza. The kids were more than happy to have pizza and then also some delicious bread to dunk in pizza sauce. Typically Naan-e-Barbari bread is served with feta cheese, cucumbers and olives. It makes a great addition to any cheese plate.
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For the Dough:
- 3 cups bread flour
- 1 cup Wholewheat flour
- 2¼ tsp Instant Yeast
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1½~1¾ cups Lukewarm Water
For the Topping:
- 2 tsp all purpose flour
- ½ tsp sugar
- ⅓ cup Cool Water
- 1 tsp Nigella seeds
- 1 tsp Sesame seeds
- Combine all the ingredients for the dough in a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Mix and knead until a smooth dough forms, about 6~8 minutes on the machine and 10~12 minutes by hand.
- Transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside for about 1 hour or until doubled in volume.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Divide the dough in half. Gently form each piece into a rectangle and form into a log. Loosely cover the logs with plastic wrap and let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- In the mean time, combine the all purpose, sugar and ½tsp canola oil and water in a small saucepan. Cook the flour paste over medium heat, whisking, until bubbles start to form around the edges and the mixture becomes thick and opaque, about 2 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- Put a pizza stone on the lowest rack of the oven and preheat the oven to 450°F. Let the stone heat for at least 30 minutes.
- Place one of the dough log on a parchment and stretch/ roll it out into 14"x5" rectangle. Using the fingers, press 5 deep lengthwise ridges into the dough, making sure not to break the dough.
- Rub half of the flour paste over the surface and sprinkle with half of the nigella and sesame seeds.
- Slide the dough with the parchment onto the pizza stone and bake until the bread has puffed up and is golden brown, about 18 minutes. Transfer the loaf to a wire rack. Repeat with the remaining dough. Serve warm. Store any leftovers in an airtight ziploc bag at room temperature for up to 2 days.
- You can make the same recipe without wholewheat flour. Simply use 4cups of bread flour in the recipe.
- To make Nan-e-Barbari Pizza -- After the 2 rising times, stretch the dough into a 14" diameter thin round. Place it on a parchment paper and evenly spread 1cup of tomato sauce over the dough and spinkle with mozzarella cheese on top. Top that with your favorite pizza toppings.
- Slide the parchment and dough onto preheated pizza stone and bake until the crust is golden and crisp, cheese has melted, about 10~15 minutes.