Curries, chutneys, rice – these divine giants of Indian cuisine can sometimes overshadow lesser known yet equally delicious South Asian foods. One of these is perhaps the most popular of Indian flatbreads: Naan. Hugo Chetcuti’s team have assembled a list of facts about this yeasty goodness for you to chew on.
How is the dough made?
Naan is an oven-baked flatbread; typical ingredients include flour, salt and a yeast culture mixed together and then kneaded. The dough is then left aside to set for a few hours. Naan can be served plain on its own or with a filling made up of different ingredients. It’s also colloquially referred to as Indian curry bread.
Naan by any other name tastes just as sweet
Due to its popularity in various countries around Asia, naan bread has many different spelling and pronunication. The Uyghur people refer to it as nan, as do other Turkic speakers like the Kazakhs and those from Turkmenistan. In Burma, the bread is slightly softer and more similar to pita bread; its given name is nan bya.
Types of naan bread
There are many varieties and derivatives of this South Asian flatbread, all of which are usually baked in a tandoor (clay oven). Here are a few types that Hugo Chetcuti’s kitchen experts specialise in:
Plain naan is the simplest and most basic form. It is typically served with a coating of butter or ghee, and is a great accompaniment to a spicy curry.
Keema naan is filled with a type of minced meat along with a mix of vegetables such as potatoes or peas. The filling is actually a recipe unto itself and can be used in either naan or even samosas. It makes for a great starter or even part of a main course to be shared with others alongside different dishes.
Peshawari naan is stuffed with dry fruit, usually containing nuts, raisins and coconut, while Kumar’s naan is filled with onion, sundried tomato, cheese and basil.
Did you know?
The world’s biggest naan bread was made in Toronto, Canada, and weighed 32kg, measuring 1.26m in width and 4.96m in length. Loblaw Companies Ltd achieved this record in 2016, beating their own previous one set in 2008.
Hugo Chetcuti invites you to sample some of this traditional Indian flatbread enjoyed all over the world. Don’t keep loafing around – simply make your way over to Hugo’s Lounge, one of the most popular places which serves a fusion of Asian food in St. Julian’s!
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