naan

Homemade Naan with Garlic & Sea Salt

naan

Along with making pie crusts, baking bread can also be quite intimidating. Mostly because it can be easy to end up with a dense lump of dough that simply won’t rise. I’ve been there, and it’s extremely frustrating.

The secret is all in the yeast. Specifically, not killing your yeast with water that’s too hot or too cold. However, rather than getting fussy with “proofing” active dry yeast with water that’s 110 degrees F and a little sugar, and then waiting 5-10 minutes to see if it gets bubbly (meaning it’s usable), the most fool-proof method I’ve found is to use instant yeast.

naan_dough

Instant yeast doesn’t need to by re-hydrated or “proofed” the way active dry yeast does, and can just be mixed in with your dry ingredients. This I can handle.

naan_dough_rising

And if I can handle it, so can you. Trust me.

dough

Although my husband is pretty much a pro when it comes to bread-baking (he was a little obsessed with Tartine in SF, and currently Clear Flour Bread in Brookline), I’m more comfortable sticking to the basics.

naan_dough_pieces

Naan is a great way to begin experimenting with making bread, because not only is it delicious, but it’s also incredibly simple, requiring only a single rise and minimal kneading.

garlic_naan

I topped my dough with a quick brushing of olive oil and crushed garlic before baking, but you could certainly leave it plain, add caramelized onions…pretty much anything you like. I bet a mix of cinnamon and sugar would be awesome if you wanted to make a sweeter naan.

garlic_naan_2

And as an added bonus – your house will smell amazing. Seriously, there is nothing better than the smell of freshly baked bread. Except maybe that first bite of slightly crispy, chewy naan straight out of the oven.

garlic_naan_baked

Homemade Naan
Recipe Type: Bread
Author: Amanda Maguire
Prep time: 1 hour 20 mins
Cook time: 12 mins
Total time: 1 hour 32 mins
Serves: 4-6
Ingredients
  • 1 C. All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 C. Whole Wheat Flour
  • 2 Tsp. Instant Yeast
  • 1 C. Warm Water (it should feel slightly warm, not hot, but no need to be exact)
  • 1 Tsp. Sea Salt
  • 1/4 C. Olive Oil or Melted Earth Balance, plus 1 Tsp.
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, sift together flour, instant yeast, and salt.
  2. Add warm water and oil to dry ingredients. Mix using the dough hook on your stand mixer, or your hands, until a dough forms. You will likely need to add a little more flour as you mix, so the dough isn’t too sticky. Kneed for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Place the remaining 1 Tsp. oil in a small bowl and coat the bottom and sides. This will prevent your dough from sticking as it rises.
  4. Place the dough into the oiled bowl, cover with a clean dish towel or plastic wrap, and allow it to rise for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
  5. Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees F.
  6. Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and divide evenly into 4-6 pieces.
  7. Using your hands, gently roll each piece into a circle, adding a little more flour if necessary.
  8. Place on a lightly greased baking sheet or pizza stone and bake for 12-15 minutes, until golden brown.
  9. Serve immediately.
Notes

I probably added an additional 1/4 C. flour in the process of mixing and kneading. Just be sure your don’t add too much (only what’s necessary to keep it from sticking to your hands/counter), or your dough will be too dry.

I tried both a pizza stone and a baking sheet and found that I actually preferred the baking sheet method because the bottoms of the naan were more crispy. However, I didn’t pre-heat the pizza stone, so it’s likely that this impacted the results.

If you have leftovers, you can store them in a container in the fridge, or freeze them for a longer shelf-life.

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  1. Great recipe. One of my closest friends is Indian and they typically take the cooked naan and put it a pan with a little oil to toast it up right before eating. It’s delicious this way.

    1. Amanda says

      Oooh, that sounds great. I’m going to give that a try…probably better than my method of putting it in the toaster. haha

  2. Emily says

    I’m slightly ashamed to say that I’ve never actually tried Naan. I’ve always meant to, but have yet to actually do so. Making my own sounds amazing though and, with so few ingredients, how can I say no? I’m anxious to try it out!
    Thank you for sharing!

    1. Amanda says

      Let me know if you give it a try! TJ’s also has pretty good naan as far as pre-made goes. Still nothing like homemade though. 🙂

  3. My daughter LOVES naan. I am not really a salt ‘n garlic girl. But give me some PB ‘n choc 🙂

    Your naan looks awesome and it’s easier than I’d have guessed to DIY!

  4. Jen says

    Wow. We need to catch up. And apparently I need to move back to Boston so that we can have dinner/you can cook for me 🙂 xo

    1. Amanda says

      You absolutely need to move back to Boston. Just go to Harvard. That’s easy enough, right? 😉

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