The Turkish name for this merely means “bread,” owing to the fact that this is so widely made. There are many variations of it, too, some made with a sourdough starter instead of yeast. Cut into thick slices, this is an excellent bread to serve with a meal.
|1||batch Middle Eastern Flatbread Dough|
|~||Cookie sheet or jelly-roll pan sprinkled with a light dusting of cornmeal or lined with parchment paper|
Variation: Seeded Flatbread. Divide the dough into 2 equal pieces. Round a piece by repeatedly pulling upward around the perimeter and pushing those flaps of dough into the center. Repeat with the second piece. Invert both pieces of dough, cover with a towel, and let rest for 10 minutes. Preheat the oven and form the breads by gently pressing each piece of dough into a disk 8 inches in diameter. Arrange on the prepared pan and cover. Let the dough rest until it starts to puff. Gently dimple the dough and spray with a little water. Scatter 2 Tbsp. white or black sesame seeds over the breads. Bake, cool, serve, and store.
Variation: Zatar Flatbreads. Stir together 1/3 cup zatar (see Note, below) and 4 Tbsp. olive oil. Divide the dough into four pieces, form the pieces into rounds, and let them rest as in the Seeded Flatbreads variation. After preheating the oven, shape the rounds into four 6-inch disks, place them on the prepared pan, cover, and allow to puff. Dimple the formed loaves and spread each with a quarter of the topping. Bake, cool, serve, and store.
Zatar is a blend of herbs, white sesame seeds, and salt popular in Middle Eastern cooking. Many regional variations exist, and packaged blends are easy to find. Just be sure not to buy the finely ground variety, which, when combined with the oil, will form a paste unsuitable for topping.
This content is from the book Bake! by Nick Malgieri.
Change in our kitchens
Reflections on cooking — and a career that’s based largely at the stove.
Flatbreads from around the continent
Beyond a supporting role
The great Sicilian-Neapolitan kitchen rivalry