Is it really necessary for me to tell you that this bread is delicious? I mean, come on, just look at it! Thin, crispy and hot off the grill. It doesn’t get much better… AND it’s fast. It is often deep-fried in the streets of Morocco, but in this case we are just grilling it stove top in a pan.
The Bread Baking Babes are celebrating their 6th and anniversary and Lien chose this special bread to start the celebration. As a buddy who hopes to be a Babe one day, I was happy to join in the fun. Mine doesn’t look quite as crispy as Lien’s but I chose to fill mine to make them a bit more substantial so they could be an afternoon snack for my daughter. All I can say is that I can’t wait to make these again, and neither can my 7-year-old.
They dough is simple and straight forward with only 5 minutes of resting time. I needed to pick Scarlet up from school so I put my dough in the fridge for 30 minutes before baking. I think that this chilling time made the dough much easier to handle. After dividing the dough, now for the tricky part; stretching the dough paper-thin. Except that, in my case, after making sfogliatelle a few months ago, this part was a breeze. For me, the key is to grease up your hands when stretching the dough. I just used a little vegetable oil but I have no doubt that some melted butter would be divine.
Three separate fillings were tried. The first was grated carrots sautéed with ginger, cumin and cilantro. Next up was some crumbled goat cheese and a sprinkling of crunchy pistachios. When there were done I finished it with a drizzle of honey (have I ever mentioned how much I love this combination?). The third filling was thinly sliced strawberries and then a heavy swirl of nutella on top; my daughters favorite. I still was able to make one with nothing, just plain jane. I think I liked it plain the best or at least a solid tie with the carrot filling. Bake On!
500 g (about 2 cups) all-purpose flour
5.5 g ( 1 1/4 tsp) dry yeast
1/2 tsp salt
250 ml (1 cup) water
50 ml (1/4) olive oil
Mix flour, yeast and salt in a large bowl.
Kneading by machine: Add water and start kneading with the dough hook, adding more water as necessary. Knead until the dough is very elastic and doesn’t stick to the sides anymore.
Kneading by hand: Make a well in the centre and add some water, start mixing in the flour where it touches the water. Little by little add more water and keep mixing in the flour. Start kneading, grease your hands with a little oil to prevent sticking. Knead about 20 minutes. Add water if it feels too dry. The dough needs to be very elastic and no dough should stick to your hands.
Shape: Make 10 dough balls. Coat every ball with a little olive oil. Let them rest for about 5 minutes. Flatten the ball with your hand as much as you can. Lightly coat your hands with some oil. Stretch the dough. Take care to get no (or a little as possible) holes in the dough. You need to stretch the dough until it gets as thin as you can, thinner than paper if possible. It’s best done on a counter top, stretching the dough and sticking it to the surface, so it doesn’t spring back. This is not easy. I found that chilling the dough for about 30 minutes really helped. Now fold the dough in squares by folding the round sides inwards.
Bake the squares in a medium-hot large pan on both sides. Only use more oil if the Rgaïf stick to the pan.
Serve: You can serve them with syrup, (strawberry) jam, chocolate sauce. But also you can use savory things, like thinly slices meat, cheese etc.
(adapted from: “Vrijdag couscousdag” by R. Ahali)
Please stop by and say “Happy Anniversary” to all of the Babes