Nan-e Barbari is a popular Persian flatbread. It is often eaten with salty soft cheese such as feta with herbs (sabzi) or jam and a cup of tea for breakfast. It is similar to Armenian matnakash bread. I made this once for my Iranian boyfriend's parents and they approved :)
- 3 1⁄4 cups bread flour (if not available, add 1 tbs gluten per cup of all-purpose flour)
- 1 1⁄2 cups water
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 1⁄4 ounces active dry yeast (2 1/4 tsp)
- 1 -1 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- cornmeal (for bottom of pan)
- poppy seeds or sesame seeds
- 1 teaspoon flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2⁄3 cup water
- Dissolve the yeast with the sugar in 1/2 c water, let sit a few minutes to proof (foam).
- Mix bread flour, baking powder and salt together. Make a well in the flour, and slowly incorporate the yeast mixture, and then the remaining 1 cup of water.
- Knead 15 minutes on a lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic.
- Divide dough into 2 round pieces.
- Sprinkle a large baking sheet with cornmeal, transfer the dough to it. Lightly cover and place in a warm place until doubled in bulk (~1.5 hours).
- Meanwhile, bring the glaze ingredients to a boil, let cool. Brush lightly over the dough.
- Now for the tricky part! Dip your fingers into the glaze, and punch the dough down with the edges of your hands to form several long parallel ridges along the dough.
- Brush the dough with the glaze again, sprinkle with sesame seeds or poppy seeds. Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Carefully stretch the dough lengthwise (it should be approximately 8 inches wide and 18 long-- I never measured it!) until it is about 1/4-1/2" thick.
- Bake 25-30 minutes, or until golden. The bread should be slightly flexible when done. If you overcook it (as I did in my first attempt- by 8 minutes), it will turn out more like ciabatta-- still good!
- Good luck!
WOW! This is a delicious bread with a special taste.
I prepared the bread exactly as describe and make "several long parallel ridges along the dough" was very easy as the alkaline wash permittet to glide easy on the dough.
I used a very cheep flour and the result were two yummy soft flat breads really different from all others.
I used a lot of wash, perhaps this helped not to dry. After baking I let the bread on the tray (not ona a grid) and I covered it with a towel until dinner (only about 20 minutes).
This recipe was very important for me as I learnt more about Persian cuisine. The different technique will be usuful in other ways for sure.
Thanks alot for posting this recipe.
This recipe proved beyond a reasonable doubt that I am not a good
baker. The dough was sticky and trying to shape it as directed was just not possible with
my limited abilities. I ended up having to use a rolling pin to stretch and flatten the dough
as best I could. The taste was fantastic however! Served with Easy Basturma Meatballs. Reviewed for NA*ME Tag/February.