Manoush Bread

So I have stopped eating tacos..well, actually that was a long time ago. The novelty wore off about one month into me being here in Mexico! Don’t get me wrong, they are delicious little morsels and you cannot stop at one – however they are not too great when the fashion at the moment is all skinny jeans and you don’t have the money to buy bigger clothes : )

Any who, I have become addicted to this bread that I usually buy from the supermarket. I eat it like a quesadilla, stuffing it with cheese and chilli or even just a good slab of butter.

Today I decided to make the bread and save some money – it is actually a super easy recipe and you can make a big batch, freeze it and take a piece out each time you get a hunkering for some carbs.

Manoush bread comes from Lebanon and it is actually a type of pizza base which they smother on top a paste called za’tar; a Middle Eastern spice mixture containing dried herbs, sesame seeds, sumac, salt and other spices.

This recipe is a very plain version so it allows you to stuff it with cheese, jam, chocolate – or whatever your taste buds fancy.

 

THE RECIPE
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Rising Time: 1 – 1.5 hours
Baking Time: A whopping 5 minutes
Makes: About 9 pieces

The Ingredients
380g plain unbleached white flour (you can use wholemeal if your heart desires)
1 tsp of dried yeast
3/4 tsp fine sea salt
3/4 tsp fine sugar
3 tblsp good olive oil
200mls of luke warm water

The Method
Throw in salt first, flour, yeast, sugar and olive oil. Make sure the salt doesn’t come in direct contact with the yeast as it will kill the bacteria which helps make the bread rise. Sugar is okay – yeast and sugar have a great relationship.

Mix these ingredients and then add the water, combine in the bowl and turn out onto a clean work surface and knead.

DSC05186.JPG

Knead for a good 10-15 minutes (it depends on how vigorously and efficiently you do it), until the dough is smooth and springs back when you push your finger into it.

 

Shape into a ball and place the dough in a well oiled bowl covered with a damp tea cloth or a shower cap (preferably one that has not been used).

Allow to rise for 1-1.5 hours, until the dough has doubled in size.

Heat the oven until it is about 220’C. Nice and hot – perfect environment for quick bread baking.

Once it has risen, here’s the thing… I cheated on the second rising step and went straight to the baking part.

 

Pull apart dough into about 9 even pieces and roll out flat, until about 2mm thick


Place on a baking tray and sprinkle with sea salt and a sprinkle of olive oil before putting them in the oven to bake for about 5 minutes. Overcook them and you will end up with crispy bread chips, cook them perfectly and the bread texture will be lovely and soft.