What a great feeling having someone make you a warm, crunchy and fresh piece of bread to welcome you home. This recipe is easy and nutritious so it is just right for you if you lack time or energy after work. For the naan you only need 3 ingredients and kids can help you too. I learned this recipe at an Ashram in Rishikesh from a legit Indian Chef. You need:
- 2 cups of unbleached white flour
- 1 cup of water
- Salt to taste
You start with the flour and salt in a bowl. Make an indentation in the middle, add the water and mix until you get a sticky dough. Knead the dough and use more flour until it doesn’t stick to your fingers any more. Close your hand into a fist and push the dough gently to break any lumps. Separate it into 3 parts and cover them with a humid towel.
Let the dough rest while you start with one of the carrot dip recipes:
- 2 carrots
- 1 full tbsp miso
- 2/3 caju nuts
- 1 cup vegetable broth
- 1 tsp sesame seeds
Cut the carrots and place them with the caju nuts and the broth in a small pan. Boil for 15 minutes until soft, turn the fire off and take the solids out and process them with a minipimer, vitamix or food processor. Then mix the miso with the rest of the broth and add it to the carrot puré. Decorate with black sesame seeds and it’s ready.
Get back to the dough and with a rolling pin or a wine bottle roll it until it is 1/4” thick. To cook it you want a cast iron pan but any pan available will do the job. Place the rolled dough without any oil and cook it until it starts turning whitish, turn it and do the same to the other side. Once the naan is firm, grab it with tongs and place it directly on the stove, moving it constantly to get it crunchy. When the naan starts inflating it is almost done. Finish it with a thin brush of melted butter and salt for an inviting extra flavor. Cook as many as you need and then warm them up later, like on a grill out side in the garden, surrounded by your friends with a glass of wine or beer.For a stuffed naan, press down the dough to the size of your palm, choose a dry filling like choped garlic and cheese or cooked kale with onions, place it in the middle and close it with your fingers like a big steam bun. You can watch the video for a better understanding. Than carefully press down the stuffed naan and roll it to a 1/2” thickness. Cook it using the same technique from above.
For the next yogurt dip you need:
- 1 cup natural full fat organic yogurt
- 1 English or Persian cucumber, seeded and chopped
- 2 chopped garlic
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp mint, parsley, lemon juice and zest
- A pinch of pepper and cayenne pepper
English and Persion cucumbers are great to use without removing the skin. Mix the cucumber and salt to take out the excess liquid from the cucumber. Let it drain for 10 minutes and then mix all the ingredients together.
For the last companion dish, we have this crunchy but flavorful and nutritios vegetable: pickled red cabbage.
- 1 red cabbage, like 850 gr
- 1 tbsp butter
- 50 gr brown sugar
- 60 ml red wine or vinegar
Quarter and cut the tough core of the cabbage, then finely shred the leaves and place them in a bowl. Melt the butter in a large, wide pan and add the sugar and vinegar or wine with a little splash of water. Stir until the sugar has dissolved, then add the shredded cabbage and toss to coat it. Cook for 45 min until tende
These recipes are characterized by their high antioxidant content, fiber and cancer fighting properties.
Do you have little red bumps on your upper arm, near the shoulder? These bumps are a common sign of a Vitamin A deficiency. Carrots provide the highest source of provitamin A carotenes of the commonly consumed vegetables. These guys will be more easily absorbed by your body from the carrot puree than if you were to eat a raw carrot. Some of the carotine will be converted into vitamin A, and all of it will exert antioxidant activity. (Murry, 2005, p138).
The red cabbage is low in calories and full of antioxidantes and fiber. According to the American Cancer Society, cabbage is one of the key foods to fight cancer.
The flesh of the cucumber in the yogurt dip is a good source of vitamin A, C, and folic acid. The skin (don’t take it off!) is rich in fiber and silica, a mineral that helps reinforce the connective tissue in our bodies. Also, two compounds in cucumbers prevent water retention, which may explain why cucumbers applied topically are often helpful in reducing bagginess underneath the eyes. (Murray, 2005, p187).
Michael Murray and Joseph Pizzorno, et al. “The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods.” Atria Books 2005