This recipe has been donated by Camilla Hussein.
Now based in the US, Camilla grew up between Germany and Syria; her dad is from the Syrian Golan Heights and her mum is Bavarian. Camilla says: “This flat bread recipe, and the smell while baking it, reminds me of my Syrian childhood. Nowadays everyone just buys the pitta bread and nobody bakes anymore. I thought it would be nice to cherish and keep the lost craft of making home baked flat bread.
“This is the number one snack food all around Syria and Lebanon. Adding sesame and nigella seeds give the bread a distinct flavour. It is a sort of pizza dough, although a little bit softer and more chewy than the Italian version. I tested numerous bread doughs, in all sorts of ovens and on all sorts of baking sheets, if you have a well seasoned pizza stone use it – otherwise a non-stick flat baking sheet is fine.”
1 teaspoon dried yeast ( make sure it is at room temperature, and fresh)
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon sugar
225ml warm water
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Preheat the oven the the highest temperature, ( around 250-280C) and leave the baking sheet or pizza stone in the oven.
Dissolve the yeast and the sugar in the warm water. Sift the flour in a bowl. Add the yeast mix and knead until you get a sticky dough. Stickiness depends on what flour you are using – I recommend unbleached flour Add more flour if necessary, but never more than half a cup.
Add the olive oil, and knead until the dough turns smooth and silky, this is a great opportunity to look into the therapeutic advantages to kneading dough. (unless you have a mixer and you just use the dough hook attachment – works great if you are in a hurry!)
Lightly oil the ball of dough and put it into a bowl.
Cover and leave in a warm place to rise for 2 hours, until doubled in size
Knock the air out of the dough, cut into 12 portions, lightly flour each one and put them on a tray, covered, for another 10 minutes. When ready to cook, roll each portion out to about 6 inches, or if you want bigger rounds just portion out 6 pieces and roll out to 12 inches.
Be very careful with the hot stone/sheet when you place the dough on it. Bake for about 3-7 minutes, until you see the dough blistering. Promptly remove from oven and cool off on a rack, and cover with a kitchen towel, as the baked bread hardens easily if exposed to the air.
Yummy with hummos and baba gannouj.