Whole Wheat Naan with Raita

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whole grain
Recipe photo
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: 6 large breads

Recipe photo

A touch of whole wheat flour adds golden color to these South Asian soft flatbreads. Your outdoor barbecue grill steps in nicely for the tandoor oven in which naan are traditionally baked. Naan is often served with raita, a tangy yogurt-cucumber dip.

Whole Wheat Naan with Raita

star rating (7) rate this recipe »
whole grain
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: 6 large breads
Published: 07/26/2013

Ingredients

Naan

Raita

  • about 1 1/2 cups finely diced or grated, peeled, seeded cucumbers (about 2 medium-small cucumbers, or 1 medium-large)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups whole-milk yogurt, drained in a yogurt cheese maker or cheesecloth for several hours
  • 1 or 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh mint or cilantro, plus extra for garnish
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons minced hot chilies or chili paste, or 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, all optional
  • *Want to skip the draining? Use 1 cup thick, Greek-style yogurt; no need to drain.

Tips from our bakers

  • Stir 1 tablespoon sesame seeds into the dough, if desired, for a slightly "nutty" flavor.
  • Plain whole milk yogurt is surprisingly hard to find these days. Substitute lower-fat plain yogurt, if necessary, but try to avoid nonfat yogurt. If you have to use nonfat, increase the butter or ghee by 1 tablespoon.
  • Want to make the dough for the naan in your bread machine? Go for it; use the dough cycle to knead and raise the dough, then pick up the directions at step #6.
  • To keep raita from becoming watery over time, store it in a yogurt drainer, if you have one.
  • Looking for a way to use leftover naan? Split in half around the circumference, it makes a nice crust for thin-crust whole-grain pizza. Simply add toppings, and bake until hot. Leave naan whole to make a thicker pizza crust.

Directions

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1) To make the naan: Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl.

2) Mix until cohesive; the dough will be rough and shaggy.

3) Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead it until it's smooth and shiny. Or knead for about 7 minutes in a stand mixer.

4) Put the dough into a greased bowl, cover, and set it aside to rise for about 1 1/2 hours, or until it's doubled in bulk. At this point, the dough may be refrigerated, covered, for up to 24 hours, for extra flavor and ease of rolling.

5) To make the raita: Place the minced or grated cucumbers in a strainer, and sprinkle with the salt. Let the cucumbers drain for several hours, stirring occasionally. Discard the liquid.

6) Mix the cucumbers with the drained yogurt and the remaining ingredients. Refrigerate, covered, for a few hours, for the flavors to meld. Garnish with fresh mint or cilantro. Refrigerate any leftovers; see storage hint in "tips," at left.

7) To cook the naan: Divide the dough into six pieces. Hand-stretch or roll each piece into a thin oval shape, about 4" x 7". Pull on the front edge of the oval to elongate and create the traditional tear shape.

8) Let the pieces rest, uncovered, while you heat a griddle on high heat. During the hot days of summer, try heating a cast-iron pan on your outdoor barbecue grill; works like a charm!

9) Transfer the naan to the griddle, as many as will fit at a time. Grill for approximately 2 to 3 minutes on one side, until the bread puffs and begins to look set around the edges. If it appears to be browning too quickly, lower the heat.

10) Flip over and continue to cook, until the bottom side is brown. Remove from the griddle, and brush with olive oil or garlic oil.

11) Serve warm, with raita.

12) Cool any leftovers; store, tightly wrapped, at room temperature for several days. Freeze for longer storage.

Yield: 6 large breads.

Reviews

1
  • star rating 01/15/2015
  • Melissa from Delaware
  • Great recipe, thanks! Worked perfectly in the bread machine. I also love the Polish Pottery plate in the picture!
  • star rating 08/17/2014
  • Bagoody from KAF Community
  • Easy, delicious and quick. I put the ingredients in my bread machine, took the dogs for a hike, and when I got back it was ready to cook. Nice texture and flavor. I held back on the salt since I was using salted butter, but ended up sprinkling these with coarse salt when I was finished since they lacked it. Perfect accompaniment to cucumber raita at the height of cucumber season.
  • star rating 07/31/2013
  • Karen from Ohio
  • Would it be possible to make this gluten free by substituting gluten free flour?
    Unfortunately this is not something we have tried. As such any attempts would be pretty experimental. However, I will certainly suggest a gluten free version of this recipe to the test kitchen.-Jon
  • star rating 07/31/2013
  • Steve from Oriental NC
  • We live aboard a sailboat and flat breads are a staple. This sounds awesome. Any changes if using just all purpose flour?
    If using all purpose flour, reduce the amount of milk by about 2-4 t. Happy sailing! Elisabeth
  • star rating 03/01/2011
  • mugd from KAF Community
  • Delicious and easy recipe! I like to pair the naan with stews and chili.
  • 01/19/2010
  • tami from germany
  • Can you tell me how long I can keep bread doughs with baking powder?
    If you mean a quick bread, they last about 4 or 5 days. Molly @ KAF
  • star rating 01/15/2009
  • from
  • This turned out great. I really like the taste and chewiness. The recipe was slightly confusing though. I've only had naan once, and I wasn't sure how large or how thin to stretch out the dough pieces. Does anyone have any idea?

    How large to make the dough pieces is really what ever you prefer. And it should be relatively thin, maybe 1/4". Delicious complement to any meal, I think! Elisabeth @ KAF

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