Sunday, September 11, 2011

Ground Coriander and Cilantro Flatbreads with Indian Raita


I have already waxed lyrical on this blog about the double-edged sword that is making bread.
Sure, it's amazing. But it takes forever. Who has that kind of time?
Kneading. Rising. Proofing. Baking.
Bah.
I rarely have the willpower for even the unrivaled glories that are fresh-baked loaves straight from the oven.

But that's the glory of bread. It comes in all shapes and sizes, and most importantly, requirements expected of the would-be baker.
Behold: the flatbread.
No stupid yeast to deal with. No needing to let it rise. No hours waiting by the oven. These things are deliciously instantly gratifying. Mix some flour with baking power and soda, throw in a few ingredients. Stir. Roll out. Throw in the pan. Wait 3 minutes.
Presto: fresh baked flatbreads.
Soft, warm, heaven on earth.

I couldn't believe how easy and delicious this recipe was. I went website-diving in search of flatbread recipes when my local flatbread supplier, a woman who literally makes my Saturday at the weekly farmer's market, ran out unexpectedly. This has potentially disastrous consequences. Without my usual supplier to my flatbread fix, I turned to the internet in desperation. I never had an idea that the recipe I stumbled upon (inspired by the geniuses at Bon Appetit) would become an instant classic. Combine it with Indian raita (recipe follows the flatbread recipe) they had as an accompaniment?
I may never need the flatbread lady ever again.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups (or more) unbleached all purpose flour 
  • 3 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3/4 cup (or more) plain whole-milk yogurt
  • Olive oil (for frying)

Method

Sift first 5 ingredients into medium bowl. Stir in cilantro. Add yogurt and stir with fork until small clumps form. Knead mixture in bowl just until dough holds together, adding more flour or yogurt by tablespoonfuls for soft and slightly sticky dough. Turn dough out onto floured surface. Knead just until smooth, about 1 minute. Divide dough into 8 equal pieces.

Roll each piece into ball, then roll each dough piece out on floured surface to 4 1/2-inch round. Brush large nonstick skillet generously with olive oil; heat over medium heat. Working in batches, add 3 dough rounds to skillet; cook until golden brown and puffed, adjusting heat to medium-high as needed to brown evenly, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer flatbreads to platter; serve warm.



Indian Yogurt/Raita

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/2 cup chopped seeded English hothouse cucumber
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 teaspoons chopped green onions
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
Method
Mix all ingredients in medium bowl. Season to taste with salt. Chill raita, covered, until ready to serve.



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