Thursday, October 28, 2010

Whole Wheat Naan

Who knew the humble naan was so prolific? Since I moved to the US, I have seen it in ethnic stores that stock Indian foods, supermarkets, and even natural and organic markets like Whole Foods. And, if that was not enough, they even offer a few varieties - Original, whole wheat, Garlic, to name just a few.

I was never a big fan of naan; I lean more towards its sister - the kulcha. Both are flatbreads, and both are oven baked, but no one really seems to know the difference between the two of them (If you do please leave me a comment!). If you have ordered them in an Indian restaurant, you will notice that naan usually tends to be a tad drier and chewy in texture in comparison to kulcha. Also, kulcha is usally smothered with butter/oil, and sprinkled with cilantro, amongst other toppings depending on what you order.

My husband, on the other hand, likes his naan. So, the other day, when I caught him staring at the packeted naan in the bread section at Whole Foods, I decided that I was gonna try to make him some at home.

I remembered seeing a recipe for whole wheat naan on Vaishali's Holy Cow! blog, and set out to make it. The results were spectacular! I love the fact that the naan is made of whole wheat, and that it's so terribly easy to prepare. In fact, its so much easier to make than chappati, that I have actually made this three times in two weeks! The first time around it was late in the evening, and since the recipe called for 2 hours of proving the dough, I decided to use fast rising yeast instead. It worked just as well as the other two times that I used dry yeast as mentioned in the recipe.

I have changed the recipe only a tad, and you can read more about my motivations in the 'Notes' section after the recipe.

Naan, as you will know especially if you are Indian, goes best with North Indian curries, and I made this the first time to go with my
Dingri Muttar Masala. It was a marriage made in heaven! It also made for great marriages with Baingan Bharta and Dum Aloo, and then I realised polygamy didn't have to be a bad thing always! :0P

Thank you so much, Vaishali, for this recipe!! Now, if only I could get them to puff up like yours do! :0)

Whole-Wheat Naan

  • Bread Flour                              -       1 cup
  • Whole Wheat Flour                    -       1 cup
  • Active Dry Yeast                       -       1 1/4 tsp
  • Canola/Vegetable Oil                 -       2 tbsp
  • Soy Yogurt (at room temp)         -       3/4 cup
  • Salt                                         -       1/4 tsp
  • Tepid Water                             -       4 tbsp
  • Sugar                                      -       1/4 tsp
  • Oil                                          -       For brushing
  • Sesame/Poppy/Nigella Seeds       -       For garnishing
  1. In a bowl mix both the flours together.
  2. Add the sugar to the tepid water, and then add the yeast. Keep it aside to rise.
  3. In the meantime, mix the soy yogurt, salt, oil into the flour.
  4. Add the yeast to the dough, and knead well till the dough becomes smooth and elastic.
  5. Oil a big bowl, and place the dough in it, turning once to ensure the dough is coated with oil all over.
  6. Cover with saran wrap or a wet kitchen towel, and leave in a warm place to prove for at least 2 hours.
  7. After 2-3 hours, preheat the oven to 475 degrees F, with a pizza stone (preferrable) or clay tiles in the middle rack.
  8. Divide the dough into 6-7 balls, and let them stand for about 10 minutes.
  9. Roll each ball out into an oval or a round about 6-7 cm in diameter at the longest point if its an oval.
  10. Brush each naan with oil, and sprinkle your choice of seeds.
  11. Place 2-3 naan at a time, without overlapping, onto the preheated stone/tiles, and bake for approx. 5-6 minutes. You will know they are done when they are puffed up and/or they have brown spots on them.
  1. Unlike the original recipe, I added my yeast to tepid water, as opposed to mixing it directly with water. This is because the first time, the dough didn't rise much at all. This is probably because of note 2. :0)
  2. The first time around, I used the soy yogurt right out of the fridge. I am guessing this might have killed/arrested the growth of the yeast. Ensure that you use soy yogurt that is at room temperature.
  3. Bread flour is basically flour that is high in gluten content. You should be able to use all-purpose (maida) flour instead. If you do, PLEASE let me know how it turns out. :0)
  4. If you are in a hurry, and want to use this recipe, just substitue the dry active yeast with fast acting yeast. Follow the directions on the pack. I tried it, and it works well.
  5. If you don't own or can't get your hands on a Pizza Stone/Baking Tiles, just use a regular baking tray.


  1. wow!! I haven't ventured to try out this at home, whole wheat naan certainly is worth a try. Just getting to know yeast, lets see how it behaves in this dish..Will try out sometime and let you know.

    BTW u get those fancy gadgets in the US to check the temp of water for putting in the yeast, u have that I guess?? (you must provide an option to type in green, I am J:-))

  2. This seriously was super-awesome. I REALLYYY like it. I made it for a couple guests who were over last night, and one of the guys was like "The Naan is REAL good"!!

    No no!! I don't have any such gadget, dahlin'!! So no need to be J or K!! hehehaeh Besides, if you are interested in getting one, you should seriously check out Home Stop (?)(the one opp. Garuda). They have some of these awesome 'fancy gagdets'!! :0)

  3. This looks too good to be true! Whole Wheat Naan...really? Im definitely giving this a try asap. Im sure it made a great combo - these naans and the dhingri mutter and mushroom masala.
    And psst, I secretly think your naan's look better than Holy Cow's :P

  4. Heya Teach!! Ya, they were awesomeee!! With smally, I find that I don't get enough time to make phulkas any more. These naan however, hardly take any time to prepare, so I make these instead, at least once every two weeks or so. :0)

    And, naughty girl - how's it possible that the students work can look better than the teachers?! :0PPPP


I absolutely love hearing from you guys! Leave me a comment if you have a question, suggestion, concern, have tried a recipe and liked it, have tried a recipe and did not like it, or even (especially) just to say hi! And if you have a shy streak, just e-mail me @!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...