Naan Bread Two Ways: Green Onion & Sesame

One of favorite Indian foods has to be the naan. A flat, chewy teardrop shaped bread used to scoop up meat and stewed dishes. I watched Anjum make naan and realized that it’s fairly simple to replicate without a tandoori oven. She encourages adding different toppings to the bread, so I made a few naan with green onions and a couple with sesame seeds. The result? Pure happiness.

I used Anjum’s recipe as published on the BBC website. It uses only a few common ingredients and can be made from beginning to end in about 1-2 hours.

9 oz. flour (250 g)
2 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
4.5 fl. oz. milk (110-130ml)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons melted butter for serving

Topping suggestions: nigella seeds, poppy seeds, sesame seeds, minced garlic, fresh cilantro/coriander, chopped green onions.

Sift the dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Make a small well in the middle of the flour mixture. Combine milk and oil, then pour into the center well.

Using your fingers (love this part), begin from the center and slowly make a circular motion. As you widen your circle, you will begin to add in more of the surrounding flour. Continue doing this until all of the flour is added and the dough begins to come together.

Once the dough begins to come together, remove from bowl and knead for 8-10 minutes until a soft dough forms. I kneaded and kneaded, started to break a sweat only to realize a mere 3 minutes had passed. There’s something to be said for making bread from scratch — you get to burn off calories while making it.

Place dough into a greased bowl and cover with a damp towel. Place into a warm location to rise for an hour, or until doubled in size. I preheated my oven to 200 degrees, then turned it off, thus creating a warm environment to stash my dough. I’ve never made a bread without yeast that needed to rise. To be honest, I don’t think mine doubled but it seemed a bit puffier and the consistency was very soft and smooth, so I proceeded.

After the dough has doubled, punch it down and cut into 5 pieces. Roll each piece thin and into an oblong teardrop shape. The dough is very soft and rolls easily, just remember to dust your surface with a bit of flour first. My naan came out to be about 8″ long by 6″ wide. Use your fingers to press any toppings into the rolled dough.

Turn on the broiler of your oven. Place a baking sheet on the top rack under the broiler to heat up. Once heated, take half of the rolled dough and carefully drop it onto the baking sheet and put under the broiler for 1-2 minutes. Watch it closely! My first batch got a bit too brown as it suddenly went from light to dark in a matter of seconds. Remove from oven and brush with plenty of melted butter. Repeat with remaining dough — makes 5 pieces.

Chewy, tender, slightly sweet and absolutely divine. I could have eaten all 5 pieces without any hesitation. I was surprised at just how simple it turned out to be. The effort is really only in the 10 minutes of kneading up front, otherwise you’re just waiting for it to rise. The bread is worth trying at home, especially when paired with a nice spicy curry.

You might also like these posts:
Classic northern chicken curry
Anjum Anand is my new food crush

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  1. these look amazing! i used the same recipe the day I watched anjam make them on tv. but mine turned out more like a pita bread than a naan. so impressed with yours. so yummy..mmm, thanks for sharing. x

  2. time: 5AM
    mood: very hungry
    whose fault it is: allen w.

    I’m very impressed. Despite my professed love for flatbreads I’ve only made them once. Thanks for the recipe!

  3. Diva: Thank you!

    Peter G: I agree – any type of bread is ok in my book!

    Manggy: I’m not sure if I recommend anyone reading any blogs at 5am – it only leads to incoherent comments being posted! Go whip up some breakfast :-)

  4. Thank you for these naan recipes! My niece loves naan (and she is only 2) so maybe I’ll make some for her!

  5. Your naan looks tasty, it makes me grab if right from my computer. getting hungry now… thanks for sharing the recipe with us.

  6. Hillary: Only 2? She’s a girl after my own heart — I love naan (and all sorts of breads!) :-)

    Farida: Haha — just don’t get finger smudges on the computer screen! Thank you

    Kevin: Thanks – I think you’ll like it. It is easy and tastes good to boot.

  7. I saw Heston Blumenthal on ‘Search for Perfection’ make naan – he used two pizza stones propped into a ‘V’to mimic a tandoor oven.

    What suprised me was the lack of yeast in his recipe – which is consistent with Anjun’s method. Soft fluffy chewy bread – without yeast! It makes it a much more approachable project.

  8. This recipe is Awsome !! and I cant even boil water!! I was shocked at how easy this was to make. Just follow the steps…You cant get the dough wrong .. if the dough is too wet add flour to get the correct consistancy. no issues at all !!

  9. have you ever had chapatti its so good. It is another indian flat bread. You use whole wheat flour,grated onion salt and enough water to make a dough. I often add some garlic to the mix as well. You make little balls of dough and roll them out. Cooking them is so fun. I cook them over my burner on my gas stove using tongs or fingers to keep turning them. The bread is really warm and flavorful and great for my coconut curry with raisin rice. :O) i love cooking

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