Need some good, old-fashioned carbs back in your diet? Are you craving some Indian naan bread, but are too lazy to leave the house? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then this fluffy, buttery sour cream flatbread recipe is for you.
If the thought of an Indian naan-like flatbread topped with some oil roasted mushrooms, green onions, red onion, garlic, a smattering of ricotta cheese, and a dash of chili powder speaks to your soul (or stomach) right now, boy, have I got a recipe for you. I don’t want to sound too cocky, but I can assure you, this sour cream flatbread is just the carb-fix you’ve been needing. It’s fluffy, soft and buttery, all at the same time, reminding me of a nice, thick piece of naan that you get at an Indian restaurant. I found this fantastic recipe in one of my adventures into the depths of Alison Roman’s cookbook, Dining In, and made just a couple of tweaks (obviously, some chili powder and Cajun seasoning were added).
As mouthwatering and delicious as it is, the bread isn’t the only star of the show with this recipe. The flatbread topping–mushrooms, red onion, garlic and green onions (or whatever vegetables you want to throw in there), all roasted in a luxurious bath of olive oil–makes this dish absolutely perfect. Roasting the vegetables in a pool of oil works to bring out their different individual flavor profiles better than if you were to just roast the vegetables with a light drizzling of oil over the top of them. Once you start roasting your veggies this way, I promise you, you won’t got back. (Welcome to the dark side.)
You don’t have to top the flatbread with roasted veggies, ricotta and chili powder; it’s just a suggestion (a very strong one). You can also make this flatbread to soak up any leftover curry on your plate, or as a vehicle to transport beautifully silky, creamy hummus or tangy tzatziki dip from the container to your mouth. Whatever way you chose to do it, you can’t go wrong.
This recipe calls for a total of four hours resting period for the dough. Please abide by this request. I’m lenient on the topping, but for this, I’m a stickler. If you want your bread to be unbelievably soft and fluffy, it needs these four hours to relax the gluten. Oh, and don’t forget to punch it down after the first two hours!
When there’s one hour left on the dough’s rising time, I would recommend getting the vegetables ready. For the mushrooms, just slice them into thin chunks, the green onions, slice each one in half lengthwise, the red onion, cut it into thin slices and the garlic, just peel and throw them in halved. Honestly, how you cut the vegetables is entirely up to you and your own preference, this is just how I like to do it. Anyway, once all of the vegetable have been cut, arrange them in a baking dish and pour 3/4 cup of olive oil over top. Generously season them with salt and pepper (I add a little cajun and chili powder too, because I like things a little spicy) and then just pop the dish into the oven for around 30 minutes.
Once your four hours of bread proving are up, it’s time to bake your flatbread. You can choose to bake the bread in the oven, or in a skillet (you can also use a griddle or cast-iron skillet) on the stove top; these different baking methods will yield different results. Baking the bread in the oven, will make the bread a little dryer and pizza dough-like; whereas, if you bake/cook the bread on the stove top, your bread will be softer, fluffier and more reminiscent of naan bread. I’ve tried both ways and personally, cooking it on the stove top is way better.
When cooking your flatbread, no matter the method of baking, you’re going to need to work in batches, and depending on how big you want them to be, you can have anywhere from 8 to 10 flatbreads (I think I made about 8). When shaping the bread, don’t use a rolling pin! You’re going to want to use your hands and gravity to stretch the dough (like when making pizza crust). With this dough, you want it to be really thin so that way it’ll cooked all the way through; just be sure that you’re not making it so thin that you’re creating a bunch of holes in the dough.
If you choose the stove top method, make sure that you add more oil to the skillet/griddle as needed (and you will need to add more each time you cook a flatbread). The oil helps to color the bread, adding the spots of dark brown that you want on your flatbread. Don’t forget to flip the bread after about 3 minutes and then let it cook on the other side for another 2 to 3 minutes. Most of the time, each bread will take about 5 minutes each (it all depends on the heat of your skillet). Sometimes though, a piece could take up to 8 minutes to gain the dark brown color you want, but I wouldn’t leave it on the skillet for more than that, or else the bread will start to dry out. If your bread needs longer than 8 minutes, I’d turn up the heat and add a little more oil (if the skillet looks dry).
If you decide that a pizza crust-like flatbread is the one for you, choosing to cook it in the oven, be sure to give the bottom of your cookie sheet a healthy dose of olive oil before placing the dough on top. You’re also going to want to drizzle the top with olive oil, too, before putting it in the oven. They’ll need about 8 to 10 minutes in there.
After you’ve successfully cooked all of your flatbreads, it’s assembly time! I like to top my flatbread with a layer of ricotta, followed by a layer of the roasted vegetables, and then sprinkled with a little more salt and some chili powder. You can tear off bits, or just pick it up and eat it like a piece of pizza. It’s entirely up to you–it’ll be delicious no matter how you do it!
Here is the recipe:
Sour Cream Flatbread with Roasted Veggies
Makes about 8-10 flatbreads | Total time: 5 hours
FOR THE ROASTED VEGGIES:
- 1 package mushrooms, sliced
- 2 green onions, sliced in half lengthwise
- ½ red onion, sliced thinly
- 2-3 cloves garlic, peeled and halved
- ¾ cup olive oil
- Salt, pepper, rosemary and thyme, to taste
FOR THE FLATBREAD:
- 1 package active dry yeast (2 ¼ tsp)
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 ½ cups warm water
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- 2 TBS unsalted butter, melted
- 1 TBS salt
- Olive oil for cooking / baking
Salt and chili powder, to taste
For the roasted veggies:
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 400º F. Place the mushrooms, green onions, red onion and garlic into a baking dish. Cover the veggies with the olive oil and season with the salt, pepper, rosemary and thyme, to taste.
Step 2: Place the dish into the oven to roast for 35-45 minutes, or until the mushrooms are caramelized and dark brown in color.
For the flatbread:
Step 1: In a large bowl, pour in the water. Then mix in the yeast and sugar. Leave the bowl alone to let the yeast activate, about 10 minutes, the should mixture become foamy on top. Once the yeast has activated, stir in the flour until there are no more dry stops. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let sit for about 10 minutes. This time will allow the flour to hydrate.
Step 2: After 10 minutes, add in the sour cream, melted butter, and salt to the dough. Mix this, with your hands, until all of the sour cream is combined (this does not mean kneading the dough).
Step 3: Cover the bowl again and let it sit for 2 hours. After 2 hours, punch down the dough and cover it again, letting it rest for another 2 hours.
Step 4: When the dough is ready, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and divide the dough into 8-10 pieces.
Step 5: Working with one piece at a time, use your hands to stretch out the dough. Gravity is your friend here; stretch it like you would when making a pizza crust. Make sure you get the dough very, very thin, but don’t create too many holes.
Cooking on the stovetop:
Step 1: Heat a large skillet/griddle/cast-iron, on medium-high heat. Drizzle a little bit of olive oil into the skillet and lay a piece of dough onto it. Let this cook until the dough starts to puff up and bubble up in places. After about 3 minutes, flip the dough to the other side. Make sure that there are dark brown (lightly charred) spots on the side you just flipped up. If there aren’t any of these spots, this means you need to turn up the heat a little.
Step 2: Repeat the previous step with the remaining dough, adding oil when you need to.
Cooking in the oven:
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 500º F. Drizzle a cookie sheet with a good amount of olive oil and place 2-3 pieces of dough on it. Then drizzle the tops of the dough with more olive oil. Bake the flatbreads for about 8-10 minutes; until they are puffed up, crispy and golden brown.
Step 2: Repeat the previous step with the remaining dough.
Top the cooked flatbread with ricotta, the roasted veggies, some salt and chili powder.