Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Making naan without tandoor....

Yes, its been over a week and I know, many of you have been waiting with bated breath for me to disclose the secret recipe for the delectable naans I served with the spicy creamy chicken in my post "The mistress of spices". Well, the recipe is actually no secret, I simply viewed various online recipes and videos on making naan bread, tried making them in my kitchen, added and substracted a few things until it reached the definition of what I call a plain naan. Thats it!!!

Now if youre thinking, whats then so special and unique about it if the recipe is adapted from the net. Hold on for a while, you have no idea how many recipes I and my friends here in Germany have already toiled over to get close to the taste and texture of the naans we get served in the restaurants or local tandoor hotels back in Pakistan. No wonder, most of the trials didnt come out well, not only because of the bogus recipes but mainly because you cant expect us to trasform our regular ovens into the special Tandoors - the traditional wooden-fired clay ovens where they slap the flattened bread dough against the side walls and then remove it using a hooked wire after getting crispy and slightly charred. Okay, there are few safe alternatives available in the market nowadays but trust me people, even the thought of investing in another kitchen gadget to clutter up my tiny kitchen makes me feel nauseatic now (The sexy Kendwood Chef Titanium is an exception though;), so once again I had to look for a space-saving substitute to emulate the traditional way. The hint came through reading up on a non-yeast naan recipe at Sailu´s blog. Sailaja has made her naan breads on the iron tawa and they also look absolutely gorgeous but since its not feasable for using on the flat ceramic top of my electric cooker, I had to try the alternative technique she had mentioned about. And worked!!!

I am soooooo glad not only to have found a safe and effective replacement to the clay oven but my "nearly-antique" pressure cooker has also got a residential permit in our kitchen now. Okay, enough of jibber-jabber, I know you youre mainly interested in getting to the recipe and method.

So, this is how it goes:

Take out your moms old stainless steel pressure cooker or a simliar heavy based cooking pan. And make sure you have the following ingredients in the pantry.

Plain Naan (without yeast)


2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbs rice flour
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup plain yoghurt
1/2 cup milk (low fat)
Butter and sesame seeds (optional)

Sift both flours, baking powder and baking soda in a large bowl.

Mix yoghurt and milk and microwave for a few seconds until warm (not hot). Tip: You can also use warm milk instead and mix it with yoghurt.

Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid.

Mix until a rough and sticky dough is formed. Tip: Depending on the climate, you may also need to use extra water but make sure the dough is very soft and sticky.

Tranfer the dough onto a floured surface and start kneading with your hands. Tip: Stretch and roll again and again.

Cover the dough and set aside for atleast 30 minutes.

Again knead for a while and then divide into 5-6 balls.

quick naan bread at home

making naan at home

Roll out one ball into a round flat circle. Now in case you are an over sensitive hygiene freak, use a fork to poke holes in the centre, otherwise watch this video clip to have a realistic feel to how naans are traditionally made;) Dont blame me, if you find it disgusting:p

Make sure your nails are clean (okayyyy, you may also wear gloves) and poke the dough circle to make a nice pattern.

Rotate to 90 degrees and poke again.

no yeast naan recipe

Stretch the dough a bit and youll get the desired pattern.

Heat the pressure cooker upside down for about 2 minutes.

Making naan without tandoor

Once its hot, turn over. Wet your fingers or a pastry brush with water and run along one side of the naan. This will help it stick properly to the surface.

Stick the naan to the bottom of the pressure cooker.

Brush the upper side with water and sprinkle some sesamse seeds. Tip: This step is optional!

naan in a pressure cooker

Invert the pressure cooker on direct heat again and let the naan cook for a minute or so. Can you see the smoke coming out the sides??

Lift one side of the pan to check if its done.

Note: I havent turned the heat off. My stupid cooking range has an automatic heat controlling system but that shouldnt make you feel reluctant about trying the technique on your gas or electric cookers.

Turn over the pressure cooker and allow the other side to cook as well.

Drizzle some butter on top (optional) and serve hot. This is how the pan looked after making 10 naan breads.

Tip: Another great way to make home-made naans is to use the broiling function of your oven. Prepare naans as described above, tansfer onto a regular cookie sheet and broil on each side for ca. 3 minutes. Below (the one on the plate) is an image of the broiled version:

Verdict: Both types, i.e. pressure-cooker as well as the broiled ones were fairly easy to make. Those from the pressure cooker were much quicker to cook and were light in texture, whereas, the broiled ones tasted pretty much like Roghni Naans.

Update: Here is an image of the ones I made last night. Have used hot water (instead of milk) and yogurt to knead the dough and didnt poke the centre. Result: The naans were more crispy and way too light in texture.

Best homemade naan recipe

My next target is a yeast-based Qeema wala naan. And yours???



  1. mine too:D

    qeema waly naan:)

  2. Great! I will have to try this! Thanks for sharing :) Have a great day!

  3. Good job....ll try ths for sure

  4. What a great way to make naans! I usually use pizza stone in my oven and my naan comes out okay. Must try this method! By the way I am Suchi, new to your blog :-)

    1. Welcome aboard Suchi:) Do try this and share your feedback:)

  5. I'll definitely try them with my dal makhani! Seemed easy and delicious !

  6. Asslmalkm,tried ur naan & I couldn't the perfect & soft family enjoyed it. Jazakallah

  7. You have made it really easy.. must try..