This week’s assignment was to make Oasis Naan. An Indian flatbread topped with scallions, cumin seeds and coarse salt. The recipe is found on page 149 in the book.
You start by making the dough for ‘Oasis Naan’ Which is the same bread, with a different topping. It wasn’t difficult to make. I started with 2 1/2 cups of water and some yeast. I waited until the yeast came back to life and then started adding flour. I stirred, and stirred, and stirred, and added lots more flour. The recipe calls for 5-6 cups of flour, but it took almost 7 cups until the dough wasn’t sticking to my hands or my counter. So, there was a lot of dough. I stashed it in the fridge to rise all day since this was to be for dinner, and we would be at the pool all day. I knew I wouldn’t have time to put it together when we got home in the afternoon.
Since this is an Indian bread, I decided to make an Indian dish to go along with it. Indian food is not something I cook a lot of, and didn’t know where to find a good recipe. Steph was kind enough to point me to a recipe for Chana Masala from Smitten Kitchen. Deb’s recipes never dissapoint, and this one didn’t either. I had to buy some new spices and replace some that had run out, but it didn’t require anything ‘odd’ and the hardest part of the recipe was measuring all the spices. So, it wasn’t too taxing.
I took the Naan dough out of the fridge when we got home from the pool. I showered and started making the Chana Masala and heated up the oven for the naan. The masala was an easy, satisfying one pot dinner. It was fun to make becuase I got to use my new (sort of, but not really) blender as a spice grinder.
I’ve never ground spices before. But it turns out that my blender with a mason jar instead of the big blender bowl works perfectly as a spice grinder. Also great for smoothies and breakfast shakes!
I rolled and sprinkled and pricked the dough
Pricking was very important. if you don’t dock the dough (pricking it with the tines of a fork or otherwise putting lots of holes in it) it will puff up like a pita bread. I forgot to dock one that went into the oven, and it got very puffy. I didn’t mind….it was still tasty. It just wasn’t flat. Whenever I make something that has to be baked on the baking stone, I roll/press it out onto parchment paper. I don’t own a baking peel, and the parchment lets me get it into the oven in one piece, and it pops right off the paper once its out of the oven. Works like a charm.
And it was delicious with the Chana Masala and some rice.
If you want to see some more versions of this recipe you can start at Maggie’s blog, or Phyl’s blog. They’ll be posting the recipe if you care to try to make this yourself. And if you want to see even MORE versions of naan, visit the Tuesdays with Dorie website for the LYL (Leave Your Link) post. There are always lots of beautiful posts about the baking adventure.