Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Afghani Naan

I made mulligatawny for dinner last night and was experiencing some residual guilt from last week's posting. Does it count as an Afghani meal without the Afghani Naan?

Mulligatawny isn't exactly an Afghani dish (it's Anglo-Indian) but I thought some naan bread would go down nicely with it. I usually do an oven-baked naan (which is not the traditional way of making it, but the manufacturers of my cookie-cutter home seem to have forgotten to include a Tandoori oven, not sure why) but it didn't seem like that much of a stretch to try the pan-fried Afghani version instead. That way I could assuage my guilt and also have something to serve with the mulligatawny.

Afghani naan comes together pretty much the same way as any other bread--in a bread machine, duh. Here's the recipe again:

  • 1 package active dry yeast (that's about 2 1/4 tsp)
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted

I usually proof the yeast first, in this case I just used the whole cup of warm water, added the yeast and a tablespoon or so of the sugar, since I find this makes the yeast perk up a lot faster. When the yeast was foamy I put all the dry ingredients in my bread machine, then dumped in the yeast mixture, the milk and the egg. I let it rise in my bread machine, then took it out and separated it into six fist-sized balls.

After that I'm not sure what went wrong. The recipe says to let it rise for another 30 minutes, but by the time I was ready for it it had been at least another hour, so that might have been the problem.

After letting the dough rise again you are supposed to flatten each ball out into a thin oval, then melt the butter in a big pan and fry the bread until it is golden on one side and puffy. Golden: check. Puffy: no dice. But I obediently flipped it over and fried the other side. What I ended up with were pretty thick slabs of very heavy flat bread.

Here's what mine looked like. I don't think it's supposed to look that way.

They tasted good though, especially dipped in the mulligatawny. I was right about that much, anyway. But I don't know how authentic they were. Probably not very.

1 comment:

  1. For a first attempt, that actually doesn't look that far off from pictures I've looked at of Afghani naan. Their naan has some bubbling but they tend to be heftier and heartier than like, the naan you see in Indian restaraunts, which tend to be thinner, light and flaky. I'd call this a success, esp. considering you never did it before.


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