The Easiest, Softest, Almost No-Knead, Wholemeal, Multi-Purpose Flatbread
This is a story about how, sometimes, when things go wrong in the kitchen, they end up being very, very right. Or, in the words of a popular KDrama, the wrong train often gets you to the right place.
For years, I have experimented to find a flatbread that I was a 100% happy with. I am very fussy about my breads, so my standards were pretty high. Applicants had to rate very highly on my long list of desirable qualities: softness, flavour, ease of making & versatility.
I made many flatbreads that were good, but not good enough to earn the title.
Until the day I messed up. The butter that was meant to be brushed upon the breads accidentally went into the dough.
And so I magically arrived at the station where the flatbread was soft, had a great flavour and was easy to roll out. And you barely knead the dough.
But I haven’t even come to the best part yet. It’s a versatile dough – make it with plain (AP) flour or wholemeal flour, make it with yeast or sourdough levain, it will not fail you. Also, I love how it works in every type of cuisine : I have rolled them thinly into small circles for soft tacos, slightly thicker & bigger for naans & mediterranean wraps – the possibilities are endless.
Just one last bossy order: Make this flatbread now, thanking me can wait.
Easy, Soft, Almost No-knead, Wholemeal, Multi-Purpose Flatbreads
- 1 tsp quick-rise yeast (or 1 cup sourdough starter)
- ½ cup warm milk (I use semi-skimmed)
- ¼ cup Greek yoghurt
- ¼ cup water
- 2 cups wholemeal flour preferably fine-ground; I use Indian atta. If using plain flour, you will need about 1/2 cup more
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 3-5 tbsp melted unsalted butter (measured after melting) The 5 tbsp of butter will, unsurpisingly, give you a better flatbread in terms of flavour and texture without making it too rich, but you can use as less as 3 tbsp.
- In a large bowl, mix together the yeast (or starter), milk, yoghurt and water until smooth.
- Add most of the flour, leaving behind about 1/4 - 1/2 cup*, baking powder, salt and the butter. Combine lightly to form a shaggy mess. Add the remaining flour little by little if you think the dough is too wet (*This is because absorption of liquid varies between different flours & even brands).
- Use your hands to bring the dough together into a ball. You don't want to knead this dough vigorously, just handle it enough so it forms a smooth ball.
- Cover the bowl with clingfilm and set aside in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 3 hours. Alternatively, refrigerate overnight, take out of the fridge an hour before making the breads.
- Divide the dough into 8 balls, roll out thinly**, cook dry on a cast iron pan until bubbles appear, then flip & cook the other side. Roast on a naked flame.(**into small circles for soft tacos, slightly thicker & bigger for naans & mediterranean wraps)