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Recipe of the Day: Naan

This recipe comes from project cupcake: A couple of tips on making this my way I heat a tablespoon of garlic in 2 tablespoons of oil and let it cool then add it to  the mix for garlic naan.  I also cook it in my cast iron skillet with a small amount of ghee (clarified butter) mixed with olive oil to cut down on the calories a tiny bit. In any case it is delicious and guest at my house wolf it down.  On the suggestion of a young friend of mine we tried a breakfast version using a tbsp of cinnamon and mixing in 3/4 of a cup of brown sugar this was a big hit with my young friends, and in their thinking quite the treat.  Here is the recipe as they present it::

Naan is one of my favorite components of an Indian meal. Sometimes when I go to an Indian buffet, I'll hit the buffet one last time for naan only so that it is the last flavor in my mouth when I walk out the door.

What is Naan?

Naan is an Indian bread that is similar to pita, but so much better (don't even try to debate it with me)! It is traditionally made in a tandoor (a clay oven), but I made this naan recipe in a cast iron skillet.

How Did the Naan Recipe Compare to Naan I've Tried at Indian Restaurants?

I won't say that this naan recipe was better than that of the naan I get at my favorite Indian restaurant. I will, however, say that it was just as good. It was also not that hard to make. You may recall that my last attempt to use yeast was a complete failure. The failure was due in part to using the wrong kind of yeast and not warming the milk. This time, I followed directions and it was a breeze. If you can make pancakes, you can make naan.

The Naan Recipe

As mentioned above, this recipe came from Cooking 4 All Seasons via Heaven is Chocolate, Cheese, and Carbs. I am reprinting it with my notes. I also left out the sesame seeds that were in the original recipe because I didn't think they were necessary.
3 1/2 C all-purpose flour
1/2 t salt
1 t instant yeast (It is VERY important that you use instant yeast. I used Fleischmann's Rapid Rise Yeast which according to this lengthy discussion on Chow is the same as instant yeast.)
1 1/2 C warm milk - not above 100F (I wanted to make sure that temperature didn't lead to problems so I used a meat thermometer and tested the milk temp before use. I made my milk 90 degrees.)
1 t sugar
Butter to taste
Dissolve the yeast and sugar in the milk.
Let rest approximately 10 minutes.
In a large bowl, mix the flour with the yeast/milk mixture.
Mix in the salt.
Knead until soft and elastic.
Cover with a damp towel and leave in a dark place to rise until doubled, about two hours. (Am I the only one who can't tell when dough has doubled? It looked bigger so I went with it. Maybe I should measure next time?)
Remove the dough from the bowl, degas gently then divide into ten even balls.
Roll out into triangles, dusting lightly with flour as needed. I discovered that the thinner you roll it out the better. (Being the non-perfectionist that I am, I did not make triangles. I made whatever shape things happened to roll out into - mostly amoeba shaped blobs.)
Heat up a frying pan. (I used a cast iron skillet. I also liberally buttered the skillet.)
Generously brush one side of the dough with water and begin to cook with that side down on medium heat.
Brush the other side with water.
The dough should bubble a bit as it cooks. Leave it on the heat for a few minutes, then flip it to cook the other side for a shorter amount of time.
Move to a plate.
Generously butter. Enjoy.




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