Saturday, May 28, 2011


Cheap Eat Challenge: Watch as our family of 6 tries to eat on $6/day.

Still waiting for that recipe for naan to go with your dal, aren't you?

Don't worry; it is so worth your wait.

Naan is easy to make and beyond tasty. However, I must confess that it is not a bread to make when you've gotten home from work after a long day and are starved and exhausted. (Although the leftovers are just lovely, so if you've got some of those hanging around....) It is not hard to make, nor is it very time consuming in hands-on effort. However, it is a yeasty bread that must rise. It's going to take you at least 1 1/2 hours from start to finish (again, most of this is just rising time, but still...) Save it for a nice Saturday, but do make it. And, do yourself a favor and make a lot because they leftovers reheat wonderfully.

If breads are old hat to you, you can make this fancy by adding spices or herbs. Some things I think might be good: garlic, rosemary, dill, parsely, tarragon.

You can eat these plain. They're definitely that good. Or you can serve with dal, butter, peanut butter, or anything you'd put in a tortilla or wrap.

adapted from
makes about 10
Prep time: 15-20 minutes
Cook time: 20-30 minutes
Cost: $.80
(yeast: .05, sugar: .05, milk: .03, egg: .10, whole wheat flour: .36, white flour: .21)

1 Tbsp active dry yeast
1 C warm water
1/4 C white sugar
3 Tbsp milk
1 egg, beaten
2 tsp salt
2 C whole wheat flour
2 1/2 C white flour

In large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Stir in sugar, milk, egg, salt, and 1-2 C flour. Add another cup flour and then add flour y 1/2 cups until you can't mix it with a spoon anymore. Turn it out onto the counter to knead, add extra flour as it becomes necessary. Remember that you want to keep your ball of dough nice and supple--not sticky, but not a hard ball of dough either. (Although naan is much more forgiving of mistakes than a loaf of bread or rolls; that's one of the things to love about it.)

Let rise an hour or until it's doubled in size.

Punch it down. Note: At this point, if you'd like to get fancy, you can knead in minced garlic, rosemary, or any other herbs you'd like to fancify your bread.

Pinch off pieces of dough about the size of golf bass. Roll into balls and let these rise for about 20 more minutes. (Note: If you're pressed for time, you can skimp on this rising time and still get great bread.)

Heat cast iron skillet (or another skillet that can get hot; the grill would work too if you're skilled in that area). I heat to a bit above medium. Lightly oil skillet.

Roll out dough as thin as you can and as circular as possible. Place dough on skillet. You can brush it with butter for a special treat, but I usually don't. Cook 2-3 minutes on first side until it starts to get little puffy air pockets. It'll look like this:
(If by any chance it doesn't look like this, don't despair. It will probably still be fine. Check your heat and make sure it's not too low.)

Flip it and cook on other side for another minute or until lightly browned. And then keep going.


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