Perfect Naan: The winning ticket

April 25, 2008


I woke up to a thunderous announcement on the flight. Two for the price of one drinks – an exclusive deal for Ryanair passengers.

Reminiscent of a second-class, three-tier train journey through India, I thought. Where cries of “Chai, Chai, Chai Garam”, literally tea, tea, tea hot start, at the crack of dawn.

Still, the ร‚ยฃ10-a-ticket paying customers did have their standards. “It’s bloody outrageous to have advertising on the flight!” he barked at the air hostess.

I wondered who he thought should pick up the actual cost of his ticket. I tried another tack.Your passengers aren’t actually deaf. This was promptly followed by a booming advert for prize draw tickets.

Fresh from the glow of winning a competition by one of my favourite bloggers, I was on fire. Clearly it was time for me to raise the stakes on my naan-making abilities before I fell for any hare-brained, money making schemes.

So back from my gorgeous break in Venice and north Italy, I made a quick phone call to mother, her aunty, and rolled up my sleeves. Guess what? They came out perfect and used ONLY THREE main ingredients and no yeast!

Look like I have the winning ticket for pretty perfect naan.

NOTE: For all of you whose patience I have tested with endless holidays, I am now penniless and thus unable to take any more hiatus until late 2008.

Makes 4:

350 gm self-raising flour

200 ml soda water

Half tsp Nigella (black onion) seeds

1 tsp sunflower oil

Butter to serve

1 tsp salt

Heat the soda water in the microwave for a minute. Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl with a fine sieve. Add to it the salt and nigella seeds.

Then pour half the soda in and crumble the dough mixture. Slowly add in the rest of the soda water in and mix it into the flour with your hands.

When the soda is evenly incorporated into the flour, start punching it with your knuckles over and over again in a rolling motion.

If the dough feels sticky to the touch, you could add a teaspoon of flour to it. Ultimately, you will get a pliable dough and that spings back when you touch it.

Of course you could just do all of this with a dough hook.

Now, transfer it to a bowl greased with the oil. Cover it with a clean, wet cloth and leave to sit somewhere warm. If it’s cold, you could just stick it in the oven turned to its lowest setting.

After an hour, take the dough out and punch it well for two minutes. Then stick it back in the bowl under damp cloth.

Another hour later, preheat the oven to 230 degrees centigrade. When it’s hot, line a baking sheet with kitchen foil. Roll the dough with your hands into a long, thick sausage. Break it into four equal parts. Fashion each part into a quarter inch thick tear shape and place on the sheet.

Bake for about eight minutes. Then rub the golden brown top with butter until it melts all over and serve hot.

If making more, you could add the butter and leave to sit wrapped with a clean cloth or some kitchen foil. Serve hot and freeze some for later like I did.


32 Responses to “Perfect Naan: The winning ticket”

  1. Livia Says:

    March 9th, 2012 at 3:11 am

    Making naan for the first time (in an oven with a pizza stone), and I tried two recipes side by side: yours and one calling for yogurt.

    And this recipe makes the most beautiful dough I’ve ever worked with. The flavor it perfect. I am taking a while to get the right thickness, but that’s to be expected.

    I am, however, getting a slick, plasticky crust on the bottom from the pizza stone. Has that ever happened to you?

  2. no counterspace ร‚ยป Blog Archive » Planning for City Kitties Says:

    March 7th, 2012 at 7:20 pm

    […] unload dishes Make Chana Masala Make Biryani Sauce Base First attempt vegan naan vs dairy naan Make 1 cup brown basmati rice thaw frozen spinach in a […]

  3. Quick Indian Cooking » A new bird for Christmas Says:

    December 16th, 2008 at 2:43 pm

    […] and served with Jeera Pulao. But if you fancy making an extra effort, I would recommend some home made naan to go with it. This entry was written by Mallika, posted on December 16, 2008 at 2:20 pm, filed […]

  4. acme Says:

    May 18th, 2008 at 1:00 pm

    Just made(and ate)naan…can I just say wow! A great easy recipe to make on a lazy Sunday afternoon; I’ll be making this naan again.

  5. Yasmin Says:

    May 15th, 2008 at 4:09 am

    This is my first time here. I loved it. Those nans look great. Have to give it a shot! Too good to resist.

  6. kalp Says:

    May 4th, 2008 at 2:01 am

    can u suggest an alternate for micro oven? Induction cooker, gas stove… with this is it possible to make it easy and fast?

    ur presentation is nice

  7. Rupa Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 7:48 pm

    Indeed perfect Naans!!!First time on your blog and loved it..Seeing those lovely Naan’s feel like attempting it ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. shriya Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 6:20 pm

    You have a very nice blog. Its a very nice recipe. And a very nice collection of recipe. Looking forward to see more recipes from you.

  9. Srivalli Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 6:12 pm

    ooops…and I forgot…can you please send these to my roti mela!..:)

  10. Manasi Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 5:26 pm

    WOW! first time??? these look awesome!
    Thanx for sharing the recipe.

  11. Divya Vikram Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 3:15 pm

    Lovely looking naans..

  12. Mansi Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 3:03 pm

    That’s a wonderful recipe Mallika! thanks for sharing!

  13. Elisabeth Winkler Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 2:28 pm

    The soda water is intriguing. Is it the bicarb that adds the magic ingredient? There is only one way to find out…

  14. ranji Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 12:15 pm

    lovely naan…thanks for the recipe!!!

  15. Kaykat Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 11:43 am

    I’ve never used soda water when making naan – will definitely be trying that out. Thanks for the tip!

  16. Shubha Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 10:48 am

    Amazing recipe… loved it…. do u need to make the naan on a stone or can we just bake it on a gril or rack or a big pizza plate??

  17. Srivalli Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 9:42 am

    those look great….now whats the confusion!..your blog is coming clicking something else!

  18. priyanka Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 8:58 am

    wow this looks yummy…

  19. mandira Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 8:01 am

    Mallika, congrats on the award, that’s wonderful. You’ve been cooking up a storm… zafrani ghost, naan.. simply droolworthy!

  20. Divya Sharma Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 7:46 am

    Hi ..First time on your blog and loved it. This naan looks just perfect !!

  21. Divya Sharma Says:

    May 1st, 2008 at 7:44 am

    Hi First time on your blog and just loved it. And this naan looks perfect !!

  22. Mallika Says:

    April 30th, 2008 at 11:18 pm

    Well hello ! The other Mallika …Enjoyed the post on Bhuna gosht

  23. Wendy Says:

    April 30th, 2008 at 12:26 pm

    That sounds like baking even I could do! That said, naan is D’s favourite. May give him this recipe and just watch. ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. Mallika Says:

    April 30th, 2008 at 5:34 am

    Naan is not my thing really! But it’s nice to make them once in a while I suppose. I did try it before with somewhat disastrous results. Check out:

  25. Asha Says:

    April 30th, 2008 at 5:08 am

    Great Naans for a first timer!:))

  26. padmaja Says:

    April 29th, 2008 at 3:04 am

    Your very first attempt turned out just perfect mallika, Those naans looks so better off then the soggy, stretchy supermarket ones!!!
    I am will definitely give it a try!!

  27. Maninas Says:

    April 27th, 2008 at 3:31 pm

    wow, I’m honoured! Thank you!

    and i’m impressed by your naan success! well done! Breadmaking is something that I’m, frankly, slightly scared of…

    speaking of which, can we have a roti recipe? ๐Ÿ™‚ I tried making roti once, and they turned out all rubbery, and only just edible!

    btw, shall we see some venice photos here perhaps? ๐Ÿ™‚

  28. sandeepa Says:

    April 27th, 2008 at 10:01 am

    So how was the vacation ? Where are the pics ?
    Naan is not my cup of tea, all things that need to be rolled out are actually not my cup of tea.
    Though am desperately trying to roll out whole wheat rotis to shove down the hubby’s throat these days

  29. Saif Says:

    April 26th, 2008 at 1:23 am

    I never thought it is so easy to make nans. Only thing I changed is, I used a pizza stone which saw in Mrs.Manjula’s recipe.

  30. Mallika Says:

    April 26th, 2008 at 1:21 am

    Thanks ladies. I myself have tried and failed with different recipes. The trick is to punch the life out of the dough with your knuckles.

    Sonal – Soda water is carbonated water with sodium bicarbonate. Usually, you find them in the same aisle shelf as tonic water but they aren’t the same thing.


  31. Sonal Says:

    April 25th, 2008 at 12:05 pm

    Thanks for sharing this, Mallika.. I keep planning to try making my own naan and never get round to it, because all the horror stories in the blog world scare me ๐Ÿ™‚ But this is definitely very inspiring.
    One soda water the same as tonic water?

  32. Mona Says:

    April 25th, 2008 at 10:46 am

    Your Naan looks so good, Will try these this weekend, thnx for sharing Mallika!

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