Afghan home-style naan

Yield: 6 Naan

Measure Ingredient
-Herat, Afghanistan, Asia
2 teaspoons Yeast
½ cup Water; warm
1 cup Yogurt; well-chilled
1 cup Water; boiling
3 cups Flour, whole wheat; hard
2 tablespoons Oil, corn; or safflower
2 teaspoons Salt
3 cups Flour, whole wheat; hard
6 tablespoons Sesame seeds



15 minutes mix, 30 minutes rest, 20 minutes mix, 1 hr rest, 10 minutes roll, 10 minutes rest, then per naan 5 minutes roll & 5 minutes cook.

You will need a large bread bowl, a medium-sized bowl, unglazed quarry tiles to fit on a rack in your oven or a baking sheet at least 10"x14", a baker's peel or another large baking sheet, a rolling pin, and a razor blade or sharp knife.

Sprinkle the yeast over the warm water in a large bowl. Stir to dissolve.

Stir boiling water into yogurt in medium bowl. Let cool to tepid (105 F-115 F).

Stir yogurt mixture into yeast mixture. Stir in flour, ½-cup at a time. Then stir for 2 minutes in the same direction. You now have a sponge. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand 30 minutes.

Sprinkle oil and salt onto sponge. Mix in enough of remaining flour, ½ cup at a time, to form a dough. Turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, adding more flour if dough is sticky, about

10 minutes.

Wash out and lightly oil the large bowl. Add dough, turning to coat entire surface. Cover with damp kitchen towel or plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.

Position a rack in lower third of oven and arrange quarry tiles on rack, leaving 1" space between tiles and oven walls. Or place 10"x14" (or larger) baking sheet in oven to preheat.

Punch dough down. Divide into one piece per naan. Using lightly floured hands, flatten each piece on lightly floured work surface into 4"-5" round. Cover rounds with kitchen towel or plastic wrap and let rest 10 minutes.

Preheat oven to 450 F. Lightly flour baker's peel or back side of large baking sheet. Working with one dough round at a time, roll out on lightly floured surface until dough begins to stretch, keeping remaining dough covered. Brush flour from work surface and sprinkle 1 tb sesame seeds onto work surface. Lay dough on seeds and roll out into 6"x10" rectangle. Turn dough over. Using razor blade or tip of a shart knife, cut five 1"-long slits evenly spaced around the dough, radiating from the center like sun rays or flower petals. Slice dough onto baker's peel or prepared sheet. Then slide dough onto quarry tiles or preheated baking sheet and bake until top begins to brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer bread to rack. Repeat with remaining dough rounds and sesame seeds. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Authors' comments: This Afghan home-style bread is a classic Central Asian naan, delicious on its own or as an accompaniment to almost any meal. Unlike Afghan Snowshoe Naan, which is much thinner, this bread is thick, soft, and almost rich in taste.

Sylvia's comments: as usual, I substituted regular bread flour for the whole wheat flour and let the breadmachine mix the sponge (with tap water, didn't bother with boiling/cold water, it's easier to let the machine warm the ingredients) and knead the dough, letting it rest right in the breadmachine. My 1-½ lb Zojirushi S-15A mixed all the ingredients for 6 naan just fine. The only problem is that I left the house and let it rise more than 2 hours instead of just 1.

Needless to say, when I got home I had to peel off the dough that had overflowed all over the place! I had trouble getting the sesame seeds to stick. If I used enough flour to keep it from sticking to the table, it was too dry on the bottom to hold the sesame seeds. I sprinkled them over the top and rolled them in, but that didn't stick well, either. I finally adapted a trick from another naan recipe and brushed the top with ghee after cutting the slits, then sprinkled the sesame seeds on top. I had to cook them 6-7 minutes to get then to start browning, with or without ghee on top. They were good, but I think I prefer smaller, more manageable naan.

Nutritional information per serving: xx calories, xx gm protein, xx mg cholesterol, xx gm carbohydrate, xx mg sodium, x.x gm fiber, xx gm fat ( x gm sat, x gm mono, x gm poly), x.x mg iron, xx mg calcium, x% of calories from fat.

Tyops by Sylvia Steiger, SylviaRN (at) CompuServe (dot) com

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