Authentic Naan bread
500g/1lb 2oz strong white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
2 tsp dried yeast
2 tsp poppy seeds
2 tsp fennel seeds
2 tsp onion seeds
½ tsp salt
½ tsp baking powder
1 free-range egg, beaten
2 tsp olive oil, plus extra for glazing
200ml/7fl oz plain yoghurt
300ml/10fl oz whole milk, warmed
. Mix the flour, yeast, poppy, onion and fennel seeds, salt and baking powder in a large bowl until well combined.
. Add the beaten egg, olive oil and yoghurt and stir with a plastic spatula until well combined.
. Add two thirds of the warm milk to the dough mixture and stir until well combined. Gradually add the remaining milk as necessary until the dough is smooth and soft (You may not need all the milk so for goodness sake go steady!).
Using floured hands, knead the dough on a clean, floured work surface for 20-25 minutes, or until soft and elastic. (This is the best part!)
Put the dough into a bowl, cover with a clean damp tea towel and set aside in a warm, draught-free place for one hour until the dough has doubled in size.
NB If using a bread machine stick all ingredients in together but use ONLY 250ml of warm milk and set on a 45 minute dough mix/setting. DO NOT set on a 'bake' setting, it will be disgusting! Nutter!
After 45 minutes, let dough rise for half an hour before taking out of machine.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 250C/500F/Gas 9.
When the dough has risen, divide it into 8-10 parts.
Using your hands, stretch and flatten each of the naans until they are thin and even,
then transfer to a baking sheet or if you’re lazy like me use a rolling pin!
Brush each naan lightly with olive oil.
Transfer the naan breads to the oven and bake for 7-10 minutes, or until pale golden-brown but still soft inside.
TIP -I prefer to grill mine. Bang up the heat and when VERY hot place on grill rack and for goodness sake watch them CAREFULLY! They will rise substantially and bubble like authentic naans. Turn over when nicely browned.
The law of naan breads is to butter them. Delish! Keep them warm in some foil.
(See image below.)
FREEZING - I usually split the dough into four and freeze the other three pieces in separate plastic bags. Perfect to have with an indian at the weekend! All you do is just defrost them, roll out and bake! Don’t be tempted to put them in the fridge, they’ll continue to rise and look like footballs!