Irish Potato Farls Bread Recipe

 

Weekends are my time for experimenting with food and this morning I was looking to Northern Ireland for inspiration. Visiting Belfast last year and stopping by at St. George’s Market, there was a huge variety of potato farls on offer and I’ve been a fan ever since. Irish potato farls are simple ‘breads’ made from potatoes, flour, butter and salt. Try my potato farls bread recipe for a simple and comforting treat.

Potato farls bread
Potato farls – a Sunday morning treat

“The word farl literally means ‘fourths’: they are shaped from a circle of dough cut into quarters.” The Guardian

Potato Farls Bread Recipe

A simple recipe, success guaranteed. Have the potato breads with your cooked weekend breakfast or simply with butter.

Potato farl bread
Potato farl bread – I left the skins on the potatoes before mashing them, works perfectly

Potato Farls Ingredients

  • 1 kg floury potatoes
  • 50g butter
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 190g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • Fresh thyme leaves (optional)

How To Make Potato Farls

Day 1

  1. The day/evening before you plan to make the potato farls, cook the potatoes and mash them with a potato ricer or regular potato masher.
  2. Add the butter and season to taste.
  3. Leave to cool, cover and place in the fridge overnight.

Day 2

  1. On the day of making the potato farls, add the flour (and thyme if using) to the mashed potatoes until well combined and smooth.
  2. Turn the mixture out onto a lightly floured work surface and divide in half.
  3. On a floured work surface (to prevent sticking), flatten the dough into a round shape. You can do this with your hands or with a rolling pin. The round should be approximately 5mm thick.
  4. Cut each circle into quarters.
  5. Heat a large, non-stick frying pan over a medium heat until hot.
  6. Add the potato farls in batches (use a dough scraper if they stick to the surface), and fry for four to five minutes on each side, or until golden-brown on both sides. I don’t use extra butter to do this.
  7. Keep warm until ready to serve.

Irish potato farls can turn your breakfast into something extra special but if you are looking for other breakfast options, take a look at these:

 

Msemen maamer recipe – Moroccan stuffed flatbreads

 

Time to try a new Moroccan recipe! I adore the flavours of Moroccan cooking – harissa and ras el hanout spices, the citrus tang of preserved lemons and wonderfully aromatic sweet and savoury ingredient combinations. When this month’s Bread Bakers theme was announced as ‘peppers’, I decided to make a stuffed Moroccan flatbread recipe I’d been meaning to master for a while: msemen maamer. Thank you to our host Sue from Palatable Pastime!

Msemen flatbreads are folded, square-shaped dough parcels which can be either pan-fried or baked. Maamer means stuffed and I have chosen a vegetarian red pepper and onion filling.

Msemen maamer Moroccan flatbreads
Msemen maamer Moroccan flatbreads

Msemen maamer recipe

The basic structure of this recipe comes from Moroccan food expert Christine Benlafquih although I used different spices for the filling and also prepared more filling than in the original recipe.

Making msemen maamer is a four stage process

  1. Prepare the filling
  2. Make the dough
  3. Shape the dough parcels by stretching, filling and folding the dough
  4. Fry the msemen maamer

A few tips upfront

  • The dough isn’t stretched by rolling it with a rolling pin. Instead, you shape the dough with your hands.
  • No flour is used on the worktop or dough surface. Lightly oil the dough and dip your fingers into a bowl of oil frequently to avoid it sticking to the work surface or your hands.
Msemen maamer stuffed flatbread
Msemen maamer- stuffed with a spiced red pepper and onion filling

Msemen maamer ingredients

For the filling

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 red peppers, finely chopped
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 1 handful fresh parsley
  • 2 tsp ras el hanout
  • 1 tsp paprika powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

For the msemen dough

  • 440g plain white wheat flour
  • 90g semolina
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp dried yeast
  • 330g water

For folding and frying

  • 200g vegetable oil (I used sunflower oil)

How to make msemen maamer

Prepare the filling

  1. Heat the vegetable oil in a frying pan.
  2. Sauté the red peppers and onions until tender.
  3. Remove from the heat and add the parsley, ras el hanout, paprika, cumin seeds, salt and black pepper.

Make the dough

  1. Combine the flour, semolina, salt, yeast and water in a bowl.
  2. Knead for about 10 minutes to form a soft and pliable dough.

Get ready to make the msemen dough parcels

  1. Prepare a little bowl with the vegetable oil you will need for folding and frying.
  2. Oil your work surface or a baking sheet and also oil your hands and the outside of the dough.
  3. Divide the dough into 8 -10 evenly sized balls and set aside. Brush a little oil on each dough ball to ensure they don’t dry out and leave to rest for about 10 minutes.
  4. While you wait divide the red pepper and onion filling into the same number of portions as you have balls of dough.

Shape, fold and fry

  1. On a well-oiled surface and with well-oiled hands, pat the first dough ball into a flat circle. Then sweep and stretch the dough circle further to achieve a paper-thin circular shape.
  2. Distribute 2/3 of one portion of filling across the surface of the dough.
  3. Fold the dough into thirds like a letter.
  4. Distribute the remaining 1/3 of the filling on top of the folded dough.
  5. Fold the two open ends of the dough letter into the center to make a square.
  6. Set aside and repeat with the other dough balls and filling portions.
  7. Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. You can use several pans simultaneously to help speed up the process.
  8. Each msemen maamer now needs to be flattend with oiled hands until nearly double in size. Start with the dough parcel you folded first and in the order you prepared them in. Be careful to ensure that the stuffing doesn’t break through the dough surface.
  9. Fry the msemen maamer, turning several times, until golden brown.
  10. Transfer the fried msemen to a wire rack.
  11. Serve while still warm – best eaten on the same day.

Here’s what the other #BreadBakers prepared
BreadBakers

#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on this home page.

We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.

If you are a food blogger and would like to join us, just send Stacy an email with your blog URL to foodlustpeoplelove@gmail.com.

Pissaladière Niçoise Recipe

 

I visited Nice and the Côte d’Azur a long time ago when I was only sixteen. Unfortunately, I didn’t experience much of the classic cuisine provençale. I would love to return and taste all the wonderful dishes: bouillabaisse, ratatouille, l’anchoïade or pissaladière Niçoise, the region’s beloved anchovy and onion flatbread.

Pissaladière anchovy onion pizza
Pissaladière – anchovy onion “pizza” from Nice

Inspired by this month’s garlic-themed#BreadBakers event (hosted by Karen’s Kitchen Stories), I decided to bake a garlicky version of pissaladière Niçoise. It derives its name from the ground anchovy condiment know as pissala, a specialty of the coastal area around Nice.

Crudely referred to as ‘French pizza with anchovies’ by some, this flatbread doesn’t come with the cheese topping typical for pizza. Instead, you’ll find provençale ingredients on pissaladière breads: olive oil, Niçoise olives, fresh garlic and aromatic thyme and oregano leaves. Most of the ingredients on my pissaladière Niçoise were bought in the shop, but the thyme and oregano came my very own allotment!

Pissaladière Niçoise Recipe

Bakes two, enough for four people

Day 1

Sourdough

  • 30g sourdough starter
  • 100g strong bread flour
  • 80g water

Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl until well mixed. Cover and leave to rest at room temperature for 16 to 24 hours.

Day 2

Pissaladière Niçoise
Pissaladière Niçoise before baking

Main pissaladière dough

  • 310g strong bread flour
  • 105g wholemeal flour
  • 260g water
  • 7g salt
  • 25g olive oil

Onion, anchovy  & olive topping

  • 6 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • A few sprigs fresh thyme and/or oregano, leaves picked
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 100g anchovies (60g drained weight), sliced in half lengthways
  • 40 – 50 Niçoise olives, pitted
Pissaladiere anchovies onion garlic tyme olives
Pissaladiere anchovies onion garlic tyme olives
  1. Combine 180g of the sourdough with the main dough ingredients (except olive oil). Knead for 10 minutes and add the olive oil towards the end.
  2. Place the dough back into the bowl, cover and leave to rest for about 2 – 4 hours until doubled in size.
  3. Prepare the topping by sautéing the onions and garlic in the olive oil over a low heat for about 25 to 30 minutes until very soft but only lightly browned.
  4. Take off the flame and add the thyme, oregano, salt and pepper. Leave to cool.
  5. Divide the dough into two equal pieces. Shape into two dough balls on a lightly floured surface. Cover with a kitchen towel and leave to relax for 20 minutes.
  6. Prepare a sheet of baking paper and sprinkle with semolina.
  7. Stretch the dough by hand, you will need to do this slowly and let it relax every now and then. Try to shape it into a rectangular shape about 6mm thick.
  8. Place the dough onto the baking sheet.
  9. Spread the onion-garlic mixture evenly across the dough, leaving 1 cm free around the edges.
  10. Place the anchovies in a lattice pattern on top of the onions. Place one olive in each of the sections formed.
  11. Leave the unbaked pissaladières to proof for another 30 minutes.
  12. Preheat the oven (220°C). Bake on a preheated baking tray for about 20 minutes.

BreadBakers

#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on this home page.

We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.

If you are a food blogger and would like to join us, just send Stacy an email with your blog URL to foodlustpeoplelove@gmail.com.

Manakish Za’atar Recipe: Lebanese Flatbread

 

Last week, an invitation to a Lebanese food themed dinner party was quickly followed by the kind request to supply suitable Lebanese flatbreads. I was more than happy to oblige by baking a batch of manakish za’atar!

On the menu was a fantastic spread of delicious Lebanese mezze from homemade labneh and tabbouleh to baba ghanoush followed by a main course of lamb meatballs in a spinach and yoghurt sauce. So, off I went on the search for matching breads. Having never been to Lebanon I had to base my research on recipes from books and other bloggers’ experiences.

Manakish Za'atar Lebanese Flatbreads
Manakish Za’atar Lebanese Flatbreads

I found a great variety of Lebanese flatbreads including:

  • Markouk (very thin large circular flatbread baked on a domed griddle called saj)
  • Tannur bread (cooked in a tandour-like oven)
  • Manakish (chewy flatbread with a variety of toppings)
  • Mishtah (thick golden-brown bread made with burghul, flour and aniseed)

Manakish (also manakeesh or manaeesh) seemed to be most feasible in the absence of a saj or tandour oven and also the most versatile.

This is my version of manakish za’atar – an attempt to evoke the flavours of Lebanese cooking in my Northern European kitchen. I was helped by a fellow baker who shared her copy of Barbara Abdeni Massaad’s stunning book Man’oushé: Inside the Street Corner Lebanese Bakery for inspiration.

Manakish Za’atar Recipe (Lebanese Flatbread Recipe)

Lebanese flatbreads - Manakish with za'atar spice blend
Lebanese flatbreads – Manakish with za’atar spice blend

Ingredients

  • For the manakish dough – For my Lebanese flatbread recipe, I work with the same dough ingredients as used in my pita bread recipe.
  • For the Lebanese za’atar paste – In the absence of the essential herbal ingredient za’atar (wild thyme), I used 4 tbsp fresh oregano leaves, 2 tsp dried thyme and 2 tsp dried marjoram, added 4 tbsp toasted sesame seeds, 2 tbsp ground sumac,1/2 tsp ground cumin, 1/2 tsp salt. Combine in a small bowl and mix well with 6 tbsp olive oil.
  • Sea salt flakes
Za'atar paste
Za’atar paste

“Za’atar is a cornerstone of Levantine cooking. The herb grows wild in the hills around Jerusalem, and has a distinctive, pungent, savoury aroma. Its scientific name, Origanum syriacum, hints at a connection to oregano, marjoram and the like, but, for me, its flavour evokes cumin, lemon, sage and mint.” Yotam Ottolenghi

Manakish Lebanese Flatbreads with Za'atar
Freshly Baked Manakish Lebanese Flatbreads with Za’atar

How to make manakish flatbreads

    1. This makes 8 flatbreads
    2. Follow steps 1 – 9 of my pita bread instructions.
    3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface, deflate gently, then divide into eight equal pieces.
    4. Shape each dough piece into a firm ball, cover with a tea towel and let rest for 20 minutes.
    5. Preheat the oven to 200°C and place the baking tray at the bottom shelf to heat up.
    6. Flatten each ball, then roll – one by one – into a round or oval shape about 3 mm thick.
    7. Place the dough rounds on baking paper measured on your baking tray. Only four manakish fit onto my baking tray, so I roll out four at a time and while they’re baking I get onto the next four.
    8. Brush the breads with 1-2 tbsp of the za’atar blend, spreading it to within 5mm of the edge.
    9. Sprinkle with sea salt flakes.
    10. Slide the baking paper with the flatbreads onto the hot baking tray, place back on the lowest shelf in the oven and bake until lightly golden, for about 10 minutes.  
    11. Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack.
    12. Serve while warm.
Manakish za'atar
Manakish za’atar

Sourdough Pita Bread Recipe (Wholemeal)

 

I’ve been making pita breads with yeast for a while now. Last weekend, I attempted my first sourdough pita breads. Part of me thought that sourdough wasn’t powerful enough to make the dough puff. I should of course know better by now. Sourdough pita bread (without the addition of yeast) works really well and tastes even better!

To add another layer of complexity and nutritional value, the recipe below uses 100% whole wheat flour. The sourdough whole-wheat pitas puff brilliantly. Make sure not to over-bake them and I promise you that they will turn out soft, moist and light.

Whole wheat sourdough pita breads
Whole wheat sourdough pita breads

Recipe for sourdough pita bread

Wholemeal sourdough pita breads
Wholemeal sourdough pita breads

Ingredients for 6 wholemeal sourdough pita breads

  • 30g sourdough starter
  • 450g whole wheat flour
  • 300g water, lukewarm
  • 1 ¼  tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp olive oil or rapeseed oil

How to make sourdough pita bread

Day 1

Refresh sourdough: In a small bowl, combine 30g sourdough starter with 100g whole wheat flour and 100g water. Mix well, cover and leave at room temperature for 16 – 24 hours.

Day 2

  • Combine 200g of the refreshed sourdough starter (rest goes back into the fridge) with 350g whole wheat flour, 200g water, 1 1/4 tsp salt and 1 tbsp oil in a medium bowl.
  • Knead for about 10 minutes, then place the dough back into the bowl.
  • Cover and leave to rise in a warm spot until it has significantly expanded in size, approximately 2 hours (depending on the temperature in your room, this could take longer).
  • Punch down the dough and shape into a log.
  • Use a dough scraper to divide into 6 equal pieces and shape each dough part into a firm little ball.
  • Dust the balls with flour, cover with a teatowel and leave to rest for 20 minutes (you’ll be able to shape the dough much easier after this time).
  • Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 250ºC / 300ºC – the highest setting you have. If you are not using a baking stone, leave the baking tray in the oven to heat up – you want your pitas baked directly on a hot surface.
  • Carefully shape each dough piece by hand to a disc shape, then roll each dough disc into circle or oval, about 4 mm in thickness.
  • Place each pita bread onto baking paper (to fit onto your baking tray). You may have to bake in batches depending on the size of your baking tray.
  • Cover with a teatowel and leave to proof for about 30 minutes.
  • Take the hot baking tray out of the oven, carefully move the baking paper with the pita breads onto it and bake on the lowest shelf until the pitas puff up, have lightly browned and fully ballooned, circa 4-5 minutes.
  • Turn the pitas and bake for one more minute.
  • Don’t over-bake them as they should come out still soft, not with a hardened shell.
Wholemeal sourdough pita bread pocket
Wholemeal sourdough pita bread pocket

If you’d like to try another sourdough flatbread recipe, give this teff sourdough flatbread from Ethiopia (injera) a go!

Rye Crispbread Recipe

 

Very happy with this month’s #TwelveLoaves theme as I LOVE crispbreads. Wonderfully practical for snacking, they keep for a long time and are light, thin and snappy! I find rye-based crisp breads particularly tasty, so I’ve opted to make a rye crispbread recipe which is both full of flavour and easy to prepare.

Rye crispbreads
Rye crispbreads

If you are new to baking crispbreads at home, you’ll find that they are no bother at all and it’s easy to achieve an interesting artisan look and feel. I also like the fact that these long-life breads and primitive convenience foods of the past have reinvented themselves as a tasty modern snack.

Rye crispbread
Rye crispbread with a pretty artisanal look

 

Rye crispbread recipe

Baking crispbreads tends to work better with less glutinous flours such as rye, oat or barley flour as a light, aerated crumb structure is not desirable. On the other hand, using a tiny amount of dried yeast in the sponge helps to lift the texture and improve the structure to ensure the crispbreads are not too dense.

Rye cracker flatbread
Rye cracker flatbread – perfect with smoked fish and cream cheese

This crispbread recipe uses mainly rye four and I’ve also mixed in a little bit of oat flour. However, feel free to experiment with any combination of low gluten flours.

Prepare the yeasted sponge of this rye crispbread recipe a day before you bake. Although the recipe uses dried yeast, it’s easy to make a sourdough version of this crispbread by swapping the yeast for sourdough starter.

Sponge (Day 1)

  • 1g dried yeast
  • 150g water
  • 100g dark rye flour
  • 50g oat flour

Combine the sponge ingredients in a bowl, cover with a lid and keep at room temperature for approximately 16 hours. For a sourdough version of this recipe, simple replace the dried yeast with 10g of sourdough starter. All other steps can remain the same.

Final Dough (Day 2)

  • 125g dark rye flour
  • 50g oat flour
  • 5g salt
  • 10g olive oil
  • 85g water
  • Some more flour for dusting: use rice flour for a nice smooth effect

How to make rye crispbreads

  1. Combine the sponge from day 1 and the final dough ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.
  2. Cover the bowl with a lid and rest for about an hour.
  3. Divide the dough into 6 equal pieces.
  4. On a lightly floured surface, shape the pieces into balls.
  5. Lightly dust the dough balls, cover with a tea towel and rest for 10 minutes.
  6. With lightly floured hands, shape each piece into a round flat bread (3 mm thick). Alternatively, use a notched rolling pin which automatically scores the breads, preventing them from rising during the back. Please note that you can then omit step 8 if you use a notched rolling pin.
  7. Place the pieces on a baking tray lined with baking paper.
  8. Using a fork, prick the tops of the breads (this will have a nice decorative effect and will also prevent the dough from creating air pockets during baking).
  9. Using a shot glass, cut a hole out of the centre of each dough round. Traditionally, these rye crispbreads were made in large batches only a few times a year, then hung on poles or cords high up near the ceiling to dry, crisp and store them. It’s useful to do this if you intend storing them around a pole or hang them on a cord to dry. Shape another little crispbread out of the dough cuttings to avoid wastage.
  10. Rest for 1 hour.
  11. Place in a preheated oven at 210°C and bake for about 20 minutes until almost completely dried out.
  12. Remove and cool on a rack.

Serve with any number of accompaniments. Try them with marinated herring, cured salmon and beet and dill salad.

If you like this rye crispbread recipe, you might also want to explore this traditional South Tyrolean Schüttelbrot recipe.

More crispbread recipes

#TwelveLoaves is a monthly bread baking party created by Lora from Cake Duchess and runs smoothly with the help of Heather of All Roads Lead to the Kitchen, and the rest of our fabulous bakers.

Our host this month is Camilla from Culinary Aventures with Camilla, and our theme is Crackers, Crisps, and Flatbreads. For more bread recipes, visit the #TwelveLoaves Pinterest board, or check out last month’s mouthwatering selection of #TwelveLoaves enter last month’s #TwelveLoaves Seeded Breads!

If you’d like to bake along with us this month, share your Crackers, Crisps, and Flatbreads using hashtag #TwelveLoaves!

Schüttelbrot – Recipe for South Tyrolean flatbreads

 

A month ago, I visited the Zillertal in Austria for a few days of skiing on the Hintertuxer Gletscher. The weather wasn’t as good as we’d hoped for, so we visited the village of Mayrhofen, and more specifically the Erlebnis-Sennerei Zillertal on the way there. It’s a great place to pick up some local cheeses and other dairy produce. I also picked up a new type of bread – “Schüttelbrot” – which isn’t very common in my neck of the woods in the North of Austria but what a revelation!

Eisacktaler Schüttelbrot from the Bäckerei Überbacher in Southern Tyrol

Eisacktaler Schüttelbrot from the Bäckerei Überbacher in Southern Tyrol
Eisacktaler Schüttelbrot from the Bäckerei Überbacher in Southern Tyrol
Crunchy Schüttelbrot
Crunchy Schüttelbrot

The ingredients on the label are listed as 83% rye flour, wheat flour, yeast, fennel, caraway seeds, salt and blue fenugreek (a spice which I also used over here to bake Vinschgerl – Rustic South Tyrolean Rye Flatbreads.

Schüttelbrot is the smaller, harder and more durable relation of Vinschgerl. Traditionally, Schüttelbrot has been popular on Alpine Tyrolean farms where using fresh produce wasn’t really a viable option.

The name ‘shake bread’ makes reference to shaking during the baking process which loosens and flattens the bread. The flat shape ensures the bread hardens quickly which in turn makes it very durable. The flatbreads need to be stored in an airy, dry space. They taste great with cold cuts of meat and cheese.

Here is my own Schüttelbrot –

My very own Schüttelbrot
My very own Schüttelbrot

Schüttelbrot Recipe

Day 1 – Prepare the sourdough

  • 25g sourdough starter
  • 125g dark wholemeal rye flour
  • 125g water

Combine the sourdough starter, rye flour and water in a bowl, cover and rest for 16-24 hours.

Day 2 – Prepare the final dough

  • 250g rye flour
  • 125g strong white wheat flour
  • 150g buttermilk
  • 300g water
  • 3g dried yeast
  • 10g salt
  • 2.5g fennel
  • 2.5g caraway seeds
  • 2.5g blue fenugreek

How to make Schüttelbrot

  1. Combine all ingredients including the sourdough starter from the day before.
  2. Cover and rest for 1/2 hour.
  3. Cover a baking tray with baking paper.
  4. Using a dough scraper and take out dough at approximately 150g for each Schüttelbrot piece.
  5. The dough is quite sticky  and therefore it can’t be rolled out. The dough parts are therefore placed in a baking tray then shaken until each piece has been shaped into a round, flat form a couple of millimeters thick.
  6. Watch these videos for the traditional art of shaking the dough into shape: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUyA5SCOLtA & https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oYAnIH4fAbI
  7. This recipe produces dough which is even stickier than shown in the videos. By way of cheating, I have been using a silicone spatula to flatten the dough pieces into the appropriate shape! This works really quite well, so for those of us who aren’t quite mastering the art of ‘Schütteln’, this is a good workaround.
  8. Bake the shaken dough pieces at 210 °C for approx. 25 mins.
  9. Cool and dry on wire racks.

Injera Recipe – Traditional Ethiopian Teff Bread

 

Ever since I’ve eaten the delicious Eritrean food served up in the Adulis restaurant in London, I’ve wanted to homecook some of this part of Africa’s amazing cuisine.

Injera with dark teff flour
Of particular interest of course was the soft, spongy, sour flatbread called injera. Injera has a distinctive porous texture. It serves as food, plate and eating utensil all at the same time as it lines the serving dishes on which tasty meat and vegetable stews are presented. Injera soaks up the flavours and scoops up the juices.

Injera Roll

What is Injera?

  • The national bread of Ethiopia and Eritrea, where it is served with almost every meal.
  • A flatbread made by pouring fermented pancake-like batter on a hot surface.
    Injera batter should be made at least a day ahead (up to three days in advance) – to ferment at room temperature. Injera will become more sour, the longer you leave it.
    No yeast is added.
  • It’s traditionally made with teff flour.
    Teff is a tiny grain which grows in the grasslands of Ethiopia. It’s nutritious, high in fibre and minerals (particularly calcium) and gluten free.
    White and brown teff flours are available, however they come at a cost  and are not easy to find.
  • Injera is best made on a special stove or clay plate called mitad or mogogo placed over a fire. If you don’t have this, you should be okay with a non-stick frying pan (make sure the surface is completely smooth and not scratched) or a cast-iron wok.  You’ll also need to have a tight-fitting lid for your pan.

It’s taken me quite a bit of practice to get the injera batter right, so don’t get disheartened if your first few attempts are not perfect!

Injera dark teff flour

Ingredients –

  • Sourdough starter
  • 400g teff flour (white or dark or a mix – I used dark teff flour here)
  • Water, lukewarm
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt

How to make injera –

DAY 1

  • Mix 2 tbsp of your sourdough starter (mine is a rye/wheat sourdough starter) with 50g teff flour and 50g lukewarm water.
  • Cover and leave at room temperature.

DAY 2

  • Add another 50g teff flour and 50g lukewarm water
  • Cover and leave at room temperature.
Teff flour starter after the second feed
Teff flour starter after the second feed
Teff flour injera batter before the final fermentation
Teff flour injera batter before the final fermentation

DAY 3

  • Add the remaining teff flour (300g) and – while stirring – slowly add water until you get a pancake-like batter. The batter should be smooth and coat the back of a spoon like thick double cream. If the batter is too thin, the bubbles won’t be able to form and the dough will crack whilst cooking. If the batter is too thick, it won’t look like traditional injera, more like a heavy lump of fried bread.
  • The amount of water you will depend on the consistency of your starter and on the type of flour you use… so adjust as necessary.
  • Ferment again at room temperature: cover and let stand for 4 hours.
  • Once the final fermentation is complete, add the salt and stir to dissolve.
  • I don’t have a mittad and therefore use a non-stick frying pan.
  • Place your frying pan over a medium heat. Don’t allow the frying pan to get too hot.
  • Pour a layer of batter into the pan. Start pouring the batter in a swirling circle from the outside of the pan. Move gradually inward until the bottom of the pan is completely covered. Tilt and swirl the pan to distribute evenly.
  • Allow to cook for 30 seconds or until just set, then cover the pan with a lid for another minute or two. Holes will appear on the surface, the top will fully set and the edges will begin to curl. Don’t turn and don’t allow to brown.
  • Carefully transfer to a clean kitchen towel or plate, then move on to the next one.
  • You can place them on top of each other. They tend to be very sticky when warm, but become easy to handle once they reach room temperature.

Injera Rolled

Serve with spicy East African meat and vegetable stews. I made these versions of Doro Wat and Kik Alicha. Use your hands to tear and scoop!

Garnish with lime, black olives, tomatoes.

If you plan to make injera regularly, save a few tablespoons of the starter and refrigerate in a jar. If you keep teff starter in the fridge, a very dark watery liquid will gather on top. Discard this black-ish liquid before you use your starter again.

Focaccia Recipe – Beautiful, Simple & Rustic

 

Focaccia is a flattish rustic Italian bread with an open, irregular crumb structure. I love focaccia when it’s moist and chewy without being too oily, when it’s kept simple, with an emphasis on fresh herbs and olive oil flavours.

Focaccia dough is fairly wet and sticky, but the addition of olive oil means it’s still pliable, soft and easy to work with. Additionally, I’ve added a bit of semolina and rye flour to give the bread more character.

Rosemary & sea salt focaccia
Rosemary & sea salt focaccia

Ingredients (to make 2 focaccia breads) –

The day before baking…

  • 200g sourdough
    Combine 50g 100% hydration active sourdough starter with 100g water and 100g wholemeal flour.
    Give it 12 to 16 hours to ripen.

On the day of baking, you’ll need the following dough ingredients…

  • 285g strong white bread flour
  • 285g Italian 00 flour
  • 80g rye flour
  • 7g dry yeast
  • 11g sea salt
  • 90g olive oil
  • 380g warm water

Additional ingredients…

  • 4 tbsp olive oil + some more for brushing
  • Fresh rosemary
  • Rock salt

How to make the focaccias

Freshly baked focaccia
Freshly baked focaccia
  1. Combine the prepared sourdough with the dough ingredients in a large bowl.
  2. Tip out onto a clean work surface and knead for approx. 10 minutes.
  3. Shape the wettish dough into a round by folding the edges into the centre.
  4. Cover the dough with the bowl (moisten the bowl’s sides and edges before you place it over the dough).
  5. Leave the dough to prove for approx. 1.5 hours.
  6. Prepare two round cake tins (approx. 23 cm in diameter) and wrap tin foil around the outside of the tin to prevent any oil from leaking.
  7. Put 2 tbsp of olive oil into each cake tin and use a brush to make sure the whole bottom of the pan is evenly coated.
  8. Lightly dust a free space on the work surface with flour.
  9. Carefully move the dough over onto the floured surface, taking care not to deflate the dough too much in the process.
  10. Divide the dough into two equal segments.
  11. Fold the edges into the centre, then place the dough parts into the cake tins, seam-side down.
  12. Drizzle with a little olive oil.
  13. Very gently pull, push and prod from the centre towards the edges to obtain a roundish shape.
  14. Cover the pans with a clean dishcloth and set aside at room temperature for about 30 – 45 minutes.
  15. Preheat oven to 220°C
  16. Use your fingers to push the rosemary into the dough, distributing it evenly. Push ever so slightly outward, towards the edge of the pan. You’ll dimple the dough at the same time, giving the bread its characteristic indentations.
  17. Evenly sprinkle over the sea salt.
  18. Place the focaccias on the center rack of the oven and bake until crisp and golden-brown, for approx. 25 minutes.
  19. Remove the focaccias from the pan onto a wire rack.
  20. Finally, brush the surface of the breads with olive oil while hot to give it a nice glossy finish.

Best served warm, straight out of the oven.

Chickpea Flour Bread Baking Recipes

 

I love experimenting with new flours and was very excited to receive a collection of specialty flours as a recent birthday present (thank you Yasmin!). One of the flours in the bundle was chickpea flour and, as a big fan of chickpea dishes, this was the first flour to enter my bread lab. In this post, I’ve typed up my chickpea flour bread baking notes as well as my recipe for a chickpea flour sourdough bread.

Gram flour sourdough bread
Gram flour sourdough bread

General baking notes on chickpea flour

  • The flour I’m baking with is gram flour (also sometimes called besan flour) which is milled from gram or chana dhal, a kind of small chickpea. The dried chickpeas are ground into a fine pale yellow powder.
  • The flour has an earthy, beany flavour best suited to savoury bakes.
  • It’s recommended to limit the amount of chickpea flour you use in a loaf of bread. Work with 10% to 35% due to its strong flavour and ‘pasty mouthfeel’ as Andrew Whitley describes it.
  • Chickpea flour is nutritious and a good source of protein (12.8g per 100g) and fibre (9.7g per 100g). The nutritional values are for Doves Farm gram flour.
  • It’s also gluten free.

Chickpea flour breads

Here are the results of my chickpea flour test kitchen.

Chickpea Flour Sourdough Loaf

My first venture involved making chickpea flour part of my weekly sourdough baking routine. The first few chickpea flour sourdough bread loaves turned out well. However, I still preferred the taste and texture of my standard Kamut & flaxseed sourdough loaf. Recently, I started to incorporate fennel seeds into my chickpea flour sourdough and am much happier with the flavour. I feel pleased enough to finally share the recipe with you. Hope you like it too!

Gram flour sourdough loaf
Gram flour sourdough loaf
Ingredients

Sourdough

  • 30g sourdough starter
  • 50g strong white wheat flour
  • 25g wholemeal wheat flour
  • 25g wholemeal rye flour
  • 100g water

Main dough

  • 400g strong white wheat flour
  • 50g wholemeal wheat flour
  • 25g wholemeal rye flour
  • 125g chickpea flour
  • 10g salt
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds, lightly crushed
  • 390g water
How to make chickpea flour bread
  • On day 1, refresh your sourdough starter. In a medium bowl, combine the sourdough starter, the flours and water and mix well. Cover and leave to stand at room temperature for 16 – 24 hours.
  • On day 2, combine 200g sourdough (the remaining 30g go back into the fridge for future bakes), the flours, salt, fennel seeds and water.
  • Form a dough and knead for 10 minutes. Use your dough scrapers to help with this process.
  • Shape into a boule, place the dough back into your bowl, cover and leave to stand at room temperature for about an hour or so.
  • Turn out the dough, give it another quick knead and shape into a round loaf.
  • Prepare a flour bath (I use rice flour on a large plate) and lightly flour a proving basket.
  • Cover the loaf in flour by carefully moving it around the flour bath. Hold it together at the top to make sure the bottom side is kept nice and smooth.
  • Place it seam-side up into the proving basket, cover with a polythene bag and leave at room temperature to prove for several hours. The time it takes to prove will depend on the temperature in your room and the vigour of your sourdough. In my kitchen, this takes about three hours.
  • Preheat the oven to 220°C and if you are using a La Cloche baking dome, preheat this in the oven from cold as well. Otherwise, line a baking tray with baking paper.
  • Turn out the loaf onto the hot La Cloche plate or baking tray and bake for 10 minutes at 220°C and for a further 50 minutes at 200°C.
  • Cool on a wire rack.
Chickpea flour bread slices
Chickpea flour bread slices

Chickpea Flour Pancakes

Next up – chickpea pancakes. I used this lovely recipe for Coconut-Chickpea Crepes with Smoky Herbed Mushrooms. The pancakes were delicious and the filling complemented the subtle yet distinguished flavour of the chickpea pancakes perfectly.

Even better are these incredibly flavoursome Rajasthani Besan ka Chilla pancakes – perfect for a late weekend breakfast.

Chickpea flour pancakes
Chickpea flour pancakes

Farinata

Finally, I also had a go at the famous Farinata (also called Socca), an unleavened flatbread made with chickpea flour. It was perhaps the easiest bread I’ve ever made, but will I make it again? The taste of Farinata is quite overwhelmingly ‘beany’ and getting the seasoning right is therefore key. Having tried a few variations, I can recommend this version of the recipe from Cinnamon Girl.

Farinata - Chickpea Flour Bread
Farinata – Quick & Easy Chickpea Flour Bread

If you are using chickpea flour successfully for bread making and you’re happy with your results, please share your recipes and experiences. If you haven’t used it before, you can simply order Doves Farm Chickpea Flour online.