Garlic and Herb Flatbreads

Almost every culture and civilisation in the known world has a variety of flatbread it is able to call its own, in one way or another. Though this particular flatbread is of no particular origin, it draws inspiration from the idea of flatbread as a whole. It seems that the whole point of a flatbread is that you can mould them to be whatever is desired – this recipe for Garlic and Herb Flatbreads remains within that tradition.

There are but two conditions for being labelled a flatbread; you must be flat and you must be a bread. Of course, this recipe calls for yeast, though that needn’t always be the case. There are also a number of ways in which one may choose to cook flatbread; generally the only criterion is that they are allowed to steam using the moisture they themselves contain. It is recommended that they are either fried or griddled – one doesn’t want them to burn, but a crispy corner never did anyone any harm.

In terms of flavourings, feel free to use whatever herbs you like in this recipe. However, when selecting your herbs bear in mind the flavour profile of the dish your bread is likely to be paired with. For instance, if they are to accompany a curry it would perhaps be best to incorporate a fragrant herb such as coriander. In any case, whatever your choice I’m sure these flatbreads will go down a treat!

Garlic and Herb Flatbreads

Makes 4

Ingredients:

• 175ml warm or tepid water

• 7g sachet of fast-action yeast

• 1 tsp honey

• A generous pinch of salt

• 200g plain flour

• 50g rye or spelt flour

• 3-4 tbsp chopped herbs of your choice

• 1 clove of garlic, mashed

• 2 tbsp olive oil

Method:

1. In a jug, mix together the water, honey and yeast. Set this aside until frothy. Tip the flours, herbs and salt into a large bowl and mix. Tip in the frothy water mixture and bring together at first with a spoon and then by hand. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Place the dough in a clean bowl, cover and put in a warm place to rise for 30 minutes.

2. Once the dough has been given ample time divide it into four balls and gently roll them out into circles. Brush a little oil onto a cast iron or thick stainless steel pan and cook each flatbread, one-by-one, over a medium heat. They are cooked when the bread springs back when pressed. One may have to re-apply oil between bread.

3. Mix together the garlic with 2 tbsp of olive oil. Once the flatbreads have been allowed a little time to cool brush them with the garlic and oil. Serve immediately.

Cost: Bread will never cost the earth to make, especially when it is as simple as these. Indeed, these delicious flatbreads, which are perfectly served alongside most dishes, should set one back no more than £1.10.

194 thoughts on “Garlic and Herb Flatbreads

  1. ceciliag

    OK I am making these for dinner, we have been experimenting with flat breads and tortillas lately and i think i am going to win with these, those herbs are inspired, and i got a good laugh out of your self leavening, I never even watch TV so i think I am nice and airy, not dense at all! I shall make a nice lamb curry to go with them!! c

  2. spree

    Really great looking/sounding flatbread Nick! That and (more than my) fair share of olive oil and a whopping salad and I’d be happy as a clam! (If clams ate flatbread and salads.)

  3. Jo Blogs

    Well I feel better about my application for this season’s GBBO not being answered Frugal ;0). I love your grumpy little rants! Excellent intelligent reading indeedio it is :D
    Flatbreads (well, breads) are a passion of mine, you might have noticed that. These look decadently divine. Me likey!

  4. Juls

    Whenever I watch GBBO I, firstly, want to smash in Mel and Sue’s voiceboxes so they just stop talking and, secondly, find myself obsessing over how thin Mary Berry is despite being a nationally acclaimed cakey-person.

    1. frugalfeeding

      OH they’re all right… I hate Paul – he spouts some utter rubbish. He’s got such ridiculously defined rules of exactly what everything should be like. Someone made a polenta cake, then he complained that the texture wasn’t the same as one made with flour… that utterly infuriated me… the reason you use polenta is for a different taste and texture.

  5. Keep Calm and Eat On

    I am beyond impressed. Who doesn’t like bread and when you can make something so effortless it tastes just that much sweeter. Thank you for the inspiration.
    Your blog is very useful and I love it, just thought I let you know.

  6. Meenakshi

    Hahaha! Love the ‘dense’ joke! Your flatbreads look amazing; they look so much like Indian paranthas! But yes, leavened. I ought to try a flatbread using yeast instead of just stone ground wheat. Yummy yummy

  7. sophiesoven

    I know what you mean about the bake off. That said, along with Masterchef, I’m still perfectly happy to watch for the food porn and inspiration. Plus I find it really funny when people cry over doing a treacle tart wrong. I know that makes me a bad person.

  8. Clarisse Shaina

    It’s true these cooking competitions sometimes become a little repetitive, but they certainly are a great place to find food inspiration. Top Chef Just Desserts is one of my favourites in terms of this. The desserts always look so mouth-watering and impressive! I always want to get up and bake/cook immediately after watching any type of cooking show for that matter.

    These look absolutely fantastic! My favourite kind of flatbread is the Indian roti smothered with curry. I’m getting a sudden craving now. :)

  9. csamom

    I need to try this soon. It looks fantastic and will use some of the odd flours I have accumulated in the cupboard. Do you think I could use a mixture of rye and spelt instead of just one or the other?

  10. silverbells2012

    Thanks for the inspiration. They remind me of some lovely rolls I used to have when I worked in Southwest China… Anyway, I’m going to make something like this now to go with a curry I’m taking to a party tomorrow evening. (Wish it wasn’t so late at night, otherwise I’d be baking them now :))

  11. leamn

    This is so teasing to the taste buds. I will follow the exact recipe that makes 4, we’re are only 2 at home. But I think we will be wanting more.. your flatbread looks delicious! I can’t wait to try it :)

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  13. Sizzle Food

    These look amazing!! I am a HUGE flatbread fan! I use flatbreads for just about everything! I am DEFINITELY going to give this a try! SO excited!

  14. ctoby

    Wow your pictures are muy fabuloso! I find this blog very inspiring…being a Texan, I am required to watch a minimum of 24 hours of TV per week, none of it British, however. I do make the occasional exception for anything with Gordon Ramsey, my sister’s future ex-husband, but I get demerits and have to make up the time later. Thanks for your terrific recipes! :)

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  16. mydoublelifeinitaly

    I wondered if your flatbread puffs? When I make homemade pita (because things “not Italian” can’t be procured here) using a covered frying pan, they puff up completely while covered in the pan and then flatten down when cooling. Thus the pocket. Do yours do this? I have never put herbs in mine, but I will try your recipe. And thanks for liking my blog, I am not really a dedicated cook but there are a few tried and true dishes that work for me!

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  19. Sanjukta Moorthy

    This looks great, so simple but also so tasty – as a Londoner, I know what you mean about British TV and the addictive nature of the GBB!

    Some of the flatbreads they made were really uninspiring – Manisha’s for example! But I’m always excited to bake after watching an episode, which is I suppose no bad thing! I’ll soon be posting my take on James’ Sweet Potato Pie, in case you’re interested!

    My blog is http://www.thingsiliketocook.wordpress.com, check it out and let me know what you think!

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  21. Viva

    I made the flatbreads this evening and used dill. They were absolutely delicious. I flattened the dough as thinly as possible on a baking sheet to form one giant flatbread and baked until golden brown. This gave me time to whizz around and prepare other dishes in the kitchen (your hummous recipe, for example:). I’m making them again tomorrow with chilli and coriander. Thanks for posting!

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  23. narf77

    I didn’t see this? Am I blind?!!! Nope…it was prior to me finding this excellent blog! Whew! I thought my recipe spider senses were starting to let me down there for a minute…”to the recipe folder batman!”….

  24. Iain

    Nice recipe, but I’m confused by one thing. 175ml of water to 250g of flour is 70% hydration in bakers terms which is the sort of wet dough that would normally be quite tricky to knead by hand and yet no body else has mentioned this.

    Did you find your dough hard to work with?

    1. frugalfeeding

      Well, no it was fine to work with. I don’t really understand your confusion. If it is difficult to work with, it is… if it isn’t, it isn’t. It produces great flatbreads either way. Could you perhaps expand a little?

      1. Iain

        Well most recipes for a dough that requires hand kneading will be around 60% hydration (so 150ml water to 250g flour). There’s a book called Dough by Richard Bertinet where he uses a basic dough mixture at 70% hydration for most of the recipes and describes an entirely different kneading technique because it’s too wet to knead normally.

        That being the case, I saw your recipe and assumed there’d be a lot of comments from people who’d tried it and struggled with the kneading….but no, not one. Hence my confusion.

        I’ve tried a few times and always have to add a lot of flour whilst kneading, but ultimately you’re right….they’re delicious so who cares.

        1. frugalfeeding

          Strange – I’ve never encountered any problems. I always find dough for this sort of thing is best on the wet side anyway – one tends to knead bread in flour which can be catastrophic to making a good loaf. Besides, I often find that wet dough is easy to knead by hand, assuming one’s hands are thoroughly clean or perhaps even slightly oiled. Anyway, I’m glad you find them delicious.

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