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  • Writer's pictureCulinary Cam

Two Homemade Breads for Diwali: Pita and Naan #SundayFunday

Updated: Oct 22, 2023

Today the Sunday Funday crew is sharing recipes for Diwali. Renu of Cook with Renu is hosting.


Stacy of Food Lust People Love, Sue of Palatable Pastime, Rebekah of Making Miracles, and Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm coordinate this low-stress group; we only participate when we are inspired. I was definitely inspired! Here's the Diwali line-up...



What is Diwali?

Dating back to ancient times, it is likely that this celebration has roots in a multitude of harvest festivals. But, essentially, Diwali is a celebration of light and is celebrated by Indians around the world. It is an official holiday where there are large Indian populations such as Fiji, Malaysia, Nepal, and Jamaica. The festival usually lasts for five days as a celebrating of light over darkness, good over evil, and knowledge over ignorance.


Diwali is celebrated with candles, prayers, gifts, fireworks, and food! Unlike other Indian festivals, this one doesn't involve fasting. Instead the five days are rife with feasts that feature bounties of seasonal foods. I will be sharing some sweets for Diwali over the next couple of days. Stay tuned. But, for this post, I am sharing two homemade breads.


Pita Breads


Ingredients

makes 8 pita

  • 1 cup warm water

  • 1 Tablespoon active dry yeast

  • 1 teaspoon organic granulated sugar

  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil

  • 2-3/4 cup flour plus more for rolling and dusting

  • Also needed: kitchen scale, optional; rolling pin; heavy skillet


Procedure


In a large mixing bowl, combine warm water, sugar, and yeast. Let bloom for fifteen minutes, until the mixture is puffy and foamy. Stir in the salt and olive oil. Then fold in the flour until completely moistened. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for five minutes.


Place the dough back in an oiled bowl. Cover with a kitchen towel and let stand for at least 90 minutes or until doubled in size.


Once the dough is risen, divide the ball into 8 pieces. I weighed mine and they were 80 grams each. Roll the pieces into balls and cover them with damp kitchen towel. Let rest for 10 to 15 minutes.


On a well-floured surface, flatten each ball lightly with your fingertips. Then use a rolling pin to press the balls into a disk approximately 6 to 7 inches in diameter. Keep the breads separated until ready for cooking.


Preheat skillet over medium high heat and brush lightly with olive oil. Place pita on the skillet for 30 to 45 seconds. Once you bubbles form, flip the pita and cook for another 30 to 45 seconds.


While the pita cooks, it will puff up to form the pocket. It will delate when it cools.



You can open up the pitas for stuffing or use it as a flatbread.


Naan

You can make plain naan, but garlic naan is our favorite. On the day that I made this, I had a bunch of Egyptian onions and gave it a go.


Ingredients

  • 2 cups flour plus more for rolling

  • 3 teaspoons organic granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 3 Tablespoons plain yogurt

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil

  • 3/4 cup warm water

  • 2 to 3 Tablespoons Egyptian onions, trimmed and thinly sliced (you can substitute green onions or scallions if you don't have Egyptian onions)

  • 2 Tablespoons butter, melted, for brushing on finished naans



Procedure

In a large mixing bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, yeast, and salt. Set aside.


In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together yogurt, olive oil, and 3/4 cup warm water. Stir the yogurt mixture into the dry ingredients with a fork. When a shaggy dough forms, dust your hands with flour and knead gently into a soft, slightly sticky dough. If the dough is too wet, add in a little bit of flour. As soon as all of the dry ingredients are incorporated, stop kneading.


Lightly oil a clean bowl and transfer the dough to the oiled bowl. Cover with a damp kitchen towel. Place in a warm spot for 60 to 90 minutes, or until about doubled in size. This will depend on how warm your kitchen is.



Once the dough has risen, dust a work space with flour and roll the dough into a cylinder. Slice the dough into six equal portions. Add a pinch of sliced Egyptian onions to each and roll the dough into balls.


Warm a large cast iron pan - I used a griddle - over medium-high heat until very hot. Using a rolling pin, or just your hands, press one of the dough balls into an oval shape about 1/8-inch thick. Mine were approximately 4" x 8". Brush the pan with a thin layer of butter.


Gently lay the dough in the pan and cook until the top is bursting with air bubbles and the bottom has darkened in spots, approximately 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the naan over and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes more until the the bottom is lightly browned and blistered in spots.


Remove the naan from the skillet and brush with melted butter. Place the naan in a tea towel-lined dish to keep warm. Repeat with the remaining naans, adjusting the heat lower if necessary as you go. Like pancakes, I usually find it necessary to lower the heat after the first naan.


That's a wrap for my Diwali offering for #SundayFunday. The group will back next week one final Halloween-themed event. I am hosting and we'll be sharing Halloween sweets and treats.

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5 Comments


mayuri.ajay.patel62
Oct 24, 2023

Nice to have both Naan and Pita Bread recipes in one. I prefer homemade naans as they turn out so much softer than ready made ones. As for Diwali, the main reason it is celebrated as that day Lord Ram returned to his kingdom after 14 years and also for killing the Demon Ravana. To welcome the King people lit diyas in Ayodhya , its like illuminating the pathway.

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CookWithRenu
CookWithRenu
Oct 22, 2023

Naan is always welcome in our house, but we keep it for festive days and you have made them so good. I love the idea of making pita bread too.

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Camilla M. Mann
Camilla M. Mann
Oct 23, 2023
Replying to

Thanks! We love naan. I was so happy to have learned how to make them for myself.

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Wendy Klik
Wendy Klik
Oct 22, 2023

Not only are these breads absolutely delicious but they are so easy to make you can enjoy them anytime.

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Camilla M. Mann
Camilla M. Mann
Oct 23, 2023
Replying to

Yes! So easy.

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