Wednesday, November 21, 2012

easy yoghurt naan

Last week, the man of the house had a craving for fried bread, greasy, deep fried bread, no less. I try to please the collective family belly as far as I can, but I just have this aversion to deep frying that goes beyond health concerns or a greasy kitchen.

Alright, I'll come out and say it; I am afraid of deep frying. It goes back to my first week in the hot kitchen at culinary school, all those years ago. I was tasked with deep frying potato croquettes for that night's dinner service at the training restaurant.

The potatoes had been shaped and breaded, chilled and laid out in trays. A glance at the thermometer told me the oil was fast reaching the right temperature. I slid my spatula under the croquettes and scooped up half a dozen. As I leaned forward and reached gingerly towards the scalding oil with my spatula, the top button of my chef's jacket came undone, releasing the ring of keys I always fastened on when changing into my chef's whites.



Is there anything more useless than hindsight? I probably should've kept those damned keys in my hip pocket - the one that was so shallow, it had already lost me two sets. So, long story short, those keys made a splash in the hot oil and I'm now branded for life, in three places, on my left forearm; one of the scars actually looks like a miniature naan. Yup, I do NOT like deep frying, so, if you see any post here, involving anything more than an inch of hot oil, you'll know just how much I love you ;)



Now that you know why gallons of hot bubbling oil give me the shivers, let me tell you a little about this awe inspiringly easy bread. Naan is traditionally made with yeast, which these days, I have little time or energy to muck about with, as it needs time and nurturing. Don't get me wrong. Those yeastie beaties and I were once closerthanthis. Balancing recent um..... career developments (not that I'm complaining, no sir, no ma'am) family commitments and growing this blog (still a relative baby) have put a premium on my time.  Anything that will keep my family well fed in half the time or less, is a godsend.



So after talking hubs round to some pan bread instead, I realised I haven't had naan in ages. I decided to fake it with baking powder and yoghurt for an instant rise and the characteristic tang of a yeast fermented dough. I figured if I rolled them thinly enough, I could get away with pan grilling instead of baking them. There's a time and place for authenticity in the kitchen, but today and this post are not it. I'm your woman though, if you want a fast, delicious flat bread so close to the real thing, you'll fool anyone who isn't a bread or Indian food aficionado. The one bread meister I know loved my fakeout naan and my go-to Indian food mavens who have never touched a grain of yeast, gave these the thumbs up. I think I'm ahead of the game.



I'm chuffed to say that hubs too was mightily pleased with his dinner. How do I know this? Not because he said so, but because he was too busy "mmmmm"-ing between mouthfuls of soft, fluffy, tangy bread and spicy curry, to even engage in our usual dinnertime chatter. He sealed it though, by asking for seconds, something he never does, unless it's dessert. Looks like this is going to be on our dinner rotation list for a while.



In my next post, I'll share the I'm-too-worn-out-from-making-20-flat-breads-to-cook-anything-fancy-to-eat-them-with-or-include-the-recipe-for-right-now version of keema, yes the one that had hubs making goo-goo eyes at it. Before I wrap up today's post, I'd like to wish all my readers who celebrate, a slightly early but nonetheless warm and wonderful Thanksgiving, surrounded by all whom you want to be with on the day :)

With that, I bid you goodbye for now. See you next week for the yummy conclusion to this two part kitchen saga!



easy yoghurt naan

Prep 15 mins                    Cook  30 mins                         Makes 10



300 g (3 cups) plain or all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
½  tsp baking soda
1 tsp fine salt
1½ tsp sugar
60 ml (1/3 cup) plain unsweetened yoghurt
140 ml (2/3 cup) water
2 tbsp vegetable oil
A little melted butter for brushing



Combine flour, salt, sugar, baking powder and baking soda in a large mixing bowl. Add yoghurt and water and mix into flour until well incorporated. Dough will be soft and sticky but don’t be tempted to add more flour. Mix in the oil and knead for a minute or two, or just enough to form a ball of soft dough.

Snip dough into 10 pieces with scissors and flatten them into discs. Dust both sides of discs generously with flour and stretch each out into small oval or tear drop pieces.

Roll out a piece into a thin ovoid or tear drop shape. If dough resists rolling and keeps stretching back (not likely unless dough was overkneaded) cover and rest for 15 minutes then roll again.

Heat a heavy pan or griddle until quite hot. Put naan on griddle and cook about 1 minute or until top of naan puffs and bubbles. Flip over and cook other side for 1 minute. Flip over and cook each side a further 1 minute each, until puffed and lightly scorched here and there.

Remove from pan and brush top lightly with melted butter. Keep warm and repeat for remaining pieces of dough.

Serve warm with curry, tandoori chicken, keema, or sambar.



22 comments:

  1. I've been wanting to try naan for awhile but I'm so limited for time with 2 young boys. This is a great alternative! Can't wait to give it a try! Thx for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Asiya, thanks for checking out my post and leaving your comment :) I hope you and your family will enjoy these delicious and easy breads!

      Delete
  2. I love naan !!! But for some reason the one I make at home smells too yeasty :( so I decided to stick to the restaurant made ones !!! But this seems like an easy and odour free alternative ! Thanks for the recipe ... I'll try it out soon :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Mithila, these breads definitely do not smell yeasty and have only a subtle tang from the modest amount of yoghurt. I do hope they are the alternative you are looking for, and that you will now be able to enjoy naan at home, any time you want :)

      Delete
  3. I can see why you don't like handling hot oil :( I agree with you there, although I'm not marked quite so permanently! Love this not-deep-fried naan with yoghurt - a perfect accompaniment to dinner :)

    I hope you're doing well, Denise!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jessie, you know, I think there are a lot of like minded people around - deep fried food is to die for, but not deep frying it yourself :P

      I am doing nicely, thanks Jessie :) Hope life is treating you well too!

      Delete
  4. OMG!! THAT looks wonderful... I love soft naans.. will try out this recipe one day when I am weakened and crave breads again... LOL. I love them but on a protein diet at the moment , so must stay off carbs unless carbs wins. Heheh

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jackie - ya! Soft, fluffy naan is killer bread LOL Cannot stop at 1 or 2 *sigh* A protein diet sounds like a good idea for me right now, but I think I will curl up and die without my carbs :(

      Delete
  5. Many thanks for the exciting blog posting! I really enjoyed reading it, you are a brilliant writer. I actually added your blog to my favorites and will look forward for more updates. Great Job, Keep it up.. :)teddy bears for babies

    ReplyDelete
  6. I am with you about deep frying. I seldom ever deep fry stuff if I can help it especially in the winter time when the windows are so tightly shut. The oily feeling and smell stay around forever. Whenever my boys want something deep fried, I just buy it from the store.

    It is sad that I too seldom make bread these days. There seems to be so many things to do and so little time to cram it all in. Your naan sounds quick, easy and very doable. It looks soft yet nicely fried and blistered. No wonder that your hubs thoroughly enjoyed it :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Seriously, I find it quite scary. You should see me when deep frying, my eyes won't stop blinking as I lower the food into the oil LOLOL I look quite ridiculous *blush* Good thing no one at home has taken a photo and posted it on Youtube :D

      I miss my yeasty loaves - the greatest thrill is watching it grow then smelling the aroma of crusty baked bread, the first sign that the loaf is ready, finally taking it out of the oven and hearing the crust crackle a few seconds later. How I miss it all! But time, where's the time??! So until a big lump of time falls into my lap, it will have to be quick breads! These lovely flat breads are indeed doable and quite enjoyable actually. Hope you give it a try some time :)

      Delete
  7. thank you Denise. Snipping that dough with scissors is such a neat thing to do!!! Never thought to do that before :)

    Love reading your blog!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Genevieve :) Welcome to my virtual home! Hope you like it enough to be a regular visitor.

      I love dividing dough up with scissors - they do the job better, unless your knife is scalpel sharp and most kitchen knives aren't. And, it looks quite pretty too, don't you think?

      Delete
  8. Oh, no yeast was used on this recipe. I bet the bread must be sooooo crispy & tasty good. Yummm...
    Kristy

    ReplyDelete
  9. Wow this looks like such a great recipe, can't wait to try it! Though I have to confess I'm a complete naan novice, so may try a small amount first :-)

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hi Habiba, thanks for leaving your comment. I've so far gotten very positive feedback on this recipe, from readers who tell me that they found it very manageable and were happy with the results. Please don't worry and just give it a go - a half batch is a very good idea, if you're a novice and anxious about the outcome. I do hope they turn out well for you, but if you run into any problems, do let me know and I will try my best to guide you through it.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Would this work well with whole wheat flour??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can use whole wheat but it wouldn't have the same texture.

      Delete
  12. Excellent recipe! I made it to go with Tikka Masala and it turned out perfect. We love bread in this house and this recipe did not disappoint. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi April, so glad to know you were happy with the results of this recipe. If you like bread and naan, you may like to try my other naan recipe below :

      http://singaporeshiok.blogspot.sg/2013/02/easy-garlic-herb-and-sesame-naan.html#.UUB1v9aouSo

      Happy naan-ing!

      Delete
  13. I made this for the first time ever tonight and...it was delectable, I paired it with lamb curry and minted pilaf...divine! Thank you terribly for sharing this lovely and EASY recipe!!!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Ok so I had to do some googling after clocking out at work last night -- I was headed straight to my friends' for dinner with the promise of naan sandwiches but realized we couldn't spare two to four hours for proofing time with a yeasted naan. So this was not only a lifesaver but so delicious! The dough was simple to work with (I have made naan before) and toasty-warm folded around a white bean mash with cilantro and some fresh veggies. Absolutely delicious. I may not spend the time on yeasted naan ever again :) Great recipe, thank you!

    ReplyDelete

Please leave a name with your comment. I may not be able to respond to every comment but every recipe related question will be answered.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...