Naan (Flat Bread)

22 August 2011

naan, Greek eggplant dip, hummous, beet & feta pizza, blackened grilled seer fishWe sure do seem to go through a lot of flat breads in this house. Sometimes, it’s to go with Middle Eastern food, sometimes Indian or Sri Lankan, sometimes Mexican. I have a few different types of flat breads I make, depending on what else I’m making, and this is one of my favourites.

The curd (you can use yoghurt) and oil makes this into a very soft naan with an understated taste.

Here you can see the naan with Greek eggplant dip, hummous, beet & feta cheese pizza, and blackened grill seer fish.

It’s easy to make and, better yet, tastes better than anything you could ever buy. 🙂

Wild Yeast Naan

Summary: Sri Lankan or Indian Flat Bread


  • 130 grams (1/2 cup) sourdough starter (100% hydration)
  • 50 grams (1/4 cup) oil
  • 110 grams (1/2 cup) yoghurt or curd
  • 220 grams ( 2 1/4 cups) flour
  • 8 grams (2 teaspoons) sugar
  • 5 grams (1 teaspoon) salt
  • 4 grams (1 teaspoon) baking soda


  1. Mix the wet ingredients. Mix the dry ingredients. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix.
  2. Let the dough rest for 15-30 minutes for the flour to absorb the liquid (autolyse).
  3. At this point, you can do the knead bread thing for 5 minutes or until it’s smooth and elastic, or you can be lazy like me and knead it for 10 strokes, let it rest 15 minutes, knead for 10 strokes, let it rest 15 minutes, and so on for a total of 4 kneads. It’ll still pass the window pane test and I won’t kill my joints. 🙂
  4. Let it rise to double in volume (for my starter, that’s usually 2-4 hours).
  5. Divide into 6 equal-sized pieces and form into balls. Let rest 20 minutes.
  6. Roll out into circles (or, if you’re like me, vague amoeba-like shapes) about 6 or 7″ in diameter.
  7. Dry-fry until golden brown, then flip and fry the other side until it’s also golden brown. At medium, that’s around 30-45 seconds per side. You can also bake them.

If you want to make the naan with commercial yeast instead of wild yeast (sourdough), you can.



  • 50 grams (1/4 cup) oil
  • 110 grams (1/2 cup) yoghurt or curd
  • 65 grams (1/4 cup) water
  • 285 grams (2 7/8 cups) flour
  • 4 grams (1/3 packet or 1/2 teaspoon) instant dry yeast
  • 8 grams (2 teaspoons) sugar
  • 5 grams (1 teaspoon) salt
  • 4 grams (1 teaspoon) baking soda


  1. Follow directions as for the wild yeast naan. Add the yeast to the dry ingredients.

You can also fry them in oil, but it’s unnecessary. There’s enough flour on the naan from rolling them out that they don’t stick, even when I use el cheapo aluminum lids (two, one stacked on top of the other, to reduce burn points from the flame) because that’s all I had to work with at that time. And also because I usually make a double or triple batch of these with two burners going – when I get into a good rhythm, I can even do three burners, but two is easier and less stress. 🙂

As I mentioned above, I use curd–water buffalo curd, to be more specific. 😀 Water buffalo curd is a cultured dairy product similar in taste and texture to yoghurt and is higher in fat than full-fat yoghurt since water buffalo milk is higher in fat than cows milk. If you’re using a yoghurt, especially if it’s low-fat, then you may have to increase the flour needed to around 300 grams, possibly more.

These can easily be frozen. I do this frequently, and I then warm it up in the microwave and it’s just as good as the day I made them.

I’ve also used this dough – the equivalent of two balls for naan – for a 10″ pizza crust. Turned out very nice indeed. 😀

If you give this a try, please let me know how it works for you. 🙂

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6 Responses

  1. #1
    Kate Brown Wilson 

    My father in an Indian, so I am familiar with this flat bread, my father call it Japati Indian bread. I really appreciate this recipe you have shared, even though I am familiar with it, I really don’t know how to bake or cook one. thanks for this recipe.

  2. Laurie, thanks for a very interesting recipe and detailed explanation. I am impressed by how well homemade sourdough Naan/Japati bread keeps. I mean I had some in a bag in the fridge for about 10 days (not recommended, much better to freeze as you say) and anyway it was still soft, springy, flexible, and delicious! All with NO preservatives – how can that be – store brought bread doesn’t keep that well.

    My own adaptation has no sugar or oil. Also my high grade baker’s flour needs a higher hydration of 70% to give me the slack slightly tacky dough that I like working with.

    I enjoy experimenting with bread recipes and have bookmarked this page. Thanks again, awesome post.

  3. #3
    Krishna Bhaktin 

    Actually Kate, Chapati is a different flatbread. There’s a great recipe for it here:

    This Naan recipe though looks fantastic! Can’t wait to try it, thanks!

  4. #4
    Irvin Tyler 

    It is not only Middle Eastern food,South Asian especially Bangladeshi,Srilankan,Indian people eat also very happily because it’s very tasty food. Thanks for your nice post.

  5. #5
    June Summers 

    Thanks a lot for sharing the recipe. I will definitely try that out.

  6. #6
    Audrey Miller 

    Thanks a lot for the nice post. I am gonna try preparing both wild yeast naan and flat bread. They sound delicious. 🙂

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About LMAshton

Howdy and welcome to my site! I'm Laurie and I'll be your, er, hostess today. :)

I'm a Canadian expat currently living in Singapore. I'm married to a Sri Lankan and lived in Sri Lanka for nearly a decade. We also lived in New Zealand for half a year.

I cook Sri Lankan curries, sambols, and mallungs. I bake bread using wild yeast (sourdough that isn't sour). I bake on the stove. I experiment with Indian / Malaysian / Indonesian / Thai / whatever cuisines interest me. And I experiment wildly.

Life is an adventure. Join me! :)

If you want to know more about me, click on the "About" link in the navigation bar above. :)