Tandoor is the first thing that comes to mind when people talk about Naan. Let’s first get the ‘Naan bread’ thing out of the way. It is Naan, a kind of flat bread. The yeasted, doughy, soft, earthy bread that is so good to scoop up curries with. Not Naan Bread. Naan is a bread. k?
Traditionally they are made in a Tandoor, a blistering hot cylindrical shaped oven. But there is no reason why we can not make them in a simple oven. And when you don’t have an oven, they can be made on stovetop. I did . When I did not own a proper oven. I made these on a regular gas stovetop. The stovetop Naan is good, but it does not have the wow factor in taste or appearance as the one made in Tandoor does. The oven baked one, however comes quite close.
Making naan does not start much differently than other breads – flour, water, yeast start the process. Then there are additions like yogurt and milk to give it the flavor and soft texture of the classic naan. Add in a little baking powder to help with the leavening . A pinch of sugar and a dash of salt. If you want your naan super soft, add an egg. That’s all. Bake. Eat. Enjoy.
This homemade naan recipe is a plain one. You can add in minced garlic, herbs and spices either while kneading or before they go in the oven as a topping.
Here are a few tips for the best tasting home made Naan :-
1) Hydration of the dough – keep it on the wet and sticky side for the doughy, soft & chewy naan.
2) Use a Pizza stone / Pizza steel or a cast iron skillet
3) Bake at minimum 550 degree Fahrenheit or as high as your oven can go
Make soft, flavorful naan in your home oven
- 2 tsp active dry Yeast
- 1/4 C room temperature water
- 500 gms flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp Baking powder
- 1 tbs sugar
- 1 large egg
- 150 ml plain yogurt
- 150 ml warm milk
- 2 tbsp oil (plus some for oiling the bowl)
Add the yeast into the water. Stir to mix. Set aside for 5 minutes or until the yeast has dissolved and the mixture is frothy.
Sift the flour, salt and baking powder into the bowl of a stand mixer.
Gently whisk sugar, oil, milk, yogurt and egg in a separate bowl.
With the mixer running on low speed, using the paddle attachment gradually add the combined mixture (sugar, oil ,milk, egg) and then the the yeast mixture and knead until everything combines and a somewhat sticky dough is formed.
Cover the bowl for 5 minutes and then knead with the dough hook until the dough looks shiny and starts to pull up on the hook. It will still be somewhat sticky, but don't be tempted to add more flour.
Remove the dough from the mixer and give a few gentle kneads with hand to form into a ball. Brush the base of a bowl ( I use the same bowl) with some oil and place the dough in it. Cover the bowl with a piece of cling film or a tight lid and set aside in a warm, draught-free place for an hour or until the dough doubles.
Place a pizza stone or your cast iron pan in the oven. Pre-heat your oven to 550*F.
- Punch down the dough and divide into 6 equal balls.
Working with one dough ball at a time, roll out into a tear drop shape. Wide on one side, narrow on the other. Or just a round or Oblong. The key is to roll the dough evenly and not too thin.
- Lift up and place it on the pizza stone. Bake for about 2 – 3 minutes.
Keep an eye on it after the first 2 minutes and take it out when it gets lightly browned underneath and forms a few brown bubbles on top. Remove from oven and brush with ghee (optional) before serving.
Repeat the rolling and baking for the rest of naans
Sometimes, the naan dough will stretch back when rolling. When this happens, cover the dough let the dough rest and then begin shaping.