Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Gluten Free Naan--Indian Flatbread

We loved how this turned out!  I seasoned it with a hint of curry powder and molasses, because I wanted it to have a sweet exotic taste.--and this accomplished that.  We served ours with hot pastrami, pickles, mozzarella and mustard, which was probably some form of sacrilege.  Combining that many different cultures in one sandwich...  But it was incredible and the kids really loved it.   My only complaint is that it contains no fiber at all.

Naan--Indian Flatbread


2 C. rice flour
1/2 c. tapioca flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp. xanthan gum*
2 tsp. molasses
2/3 C. warm milk
2 tsp. yeast
2 tsp. oil
2/3 c. yogurt
1 egg


Mix the first five (dry) ingredients.  
In a separate container, mix the next six ingredients.  Combine the two mixtures into one bowl.  Let the dough rise until double. 

I usually take 10 minutes to mix my dough, then just let it rise until I'm ready to use it. I maintain it by stirring it once in a while--as I pass through the kitchen.  This is probably not 'proper' but it works for me--since making things from scratch can be time consuming and as much as I wish I did, I just don't have time to be in the kitchen all day.

The next part is interesting and unusual.

You'll want to take a large baking sheet and put it under your broiler--about 6-8 inches away.  Let your oven preheat to the hottest setting.
Meanwhile, flour a work surface and begin rolling little balls of dough into tear drop (or long oval) shapes--1/4 inch thick.
Next, pull your pan out of the oven and slide the Naan onto the pan (love the rhyme there).
Put it under the broiler and bake until puffed up and slightly browned on top. 4-6 minutes.
I found that all of this actually took some organization and 'skill' to perform.  First of all, the dough didn't really want to stay together once rolled out.  I solved the problem by putting my wooden cutting board on top of the stove, flouring the surface, rolling the dough, sliding the flour covered dough ovals directly off the cutting board and onto the hot baking sheet then sliding the pan back into the oven.   Just think it through first, or test the process by making and baking one before you do the rest.  It works best if you just do a few at a time.  I managed to get up to six at one time--wow--but it was not easy.

When they come out of the oven, brush them lightly with olive oil.  This also gets rid of the floury look.  I was feeling a bit more creative than usual and ended up brushing mine with a light mixture of sesame oil, molasses and sea salt--which I liked.

This recipe is one that I modified--it was originally from Arvinder Malhotra at Celiacs.com.  I converted the measurements into 'cups'.  I also changed and added an ingredient or two to suit my family's tastes.

*xanthan gum is used to add elasticity where there would otherwise not be enough.  You can order it online or find it at some odd stores.

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