2013/02/27

Crisp Lavash (Daring Bakers Feb. '13: Crisp Crackers & Flatbreads)

There are times when all you are craving is something simple.

You've had enough of sauces and creams and complicated preparations.

All you are craving is the most basic form of nourishment.


Food doesn't always have to be complicated to be fulfilling.

Sometimes, all it takes is the whir of the food processor.


Some time to rest.

And a little bit of elbow grease to whip everything into shape.


After a three-day croissant (pain au chocolat, to be more precise) making adventure this weekend, there was some very satisfying about jumping into a project that wasn't really a project.


In keeping with the simple goodness of these crisp lavash, I am going to keep this post simple and uncomplicated as well.

A short afternoon's work yielded a handful of large, crisp flatbreads.

Adding a few spoonfuls of Nutella to the mix only enhanced the nutty flavor of these whole-wheat lavash.

It may not be fancy food, but it sure hit the spot.


Crispy Lavash
Adapted from Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads

Yield: 5 large crackers

1 cup bread flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp Chardonnay grape seed flour (optional, but adds a nice color)
1 1/2 tsp Kosher salt
1 1/2 tsp instant yeast
3/4 cup water, warm to the finger (~110F)
2 Tbs milk for brushing tops of lavash
1-2 Tbs poppy seeds, for sprinkling

Combine flours, salt & yeast in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine. Slowly add the warm water through the tube while the machine is running. Pulse for about 30 seconds. At this point, you should check the consistency of the dough - you want the dough to clear the sides of the bowl - if it is sticking or still crumbly, adjust with water or flour as needed (1 tsp at a time) until the right consistency is obtained.

Process the dough for 45 seconds to one minute - you should have a freely moving dough ball at this point. Remove the dough from the processor and place in a lightly greased medium-sized bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise in a warm place until doubled (~1 hour).
 
After dough has doubled, gently deflate dough. Re-cover the dough with plastic wrap and  let dough rise another half hour or so - it should be very puffy.

Preheat the oven to 400F and lightly grease a large baking sheet. Divide the dough into five pieces, roll into balls and cover with plastic wrap. Allow dough balls to rest for 5 - 10 minutes.

Working with one dough ball at a time (you will probably only be able to bake two lavash at a time), press the dough balls into disks on a lightly floured surface. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough as thin as possible. Set the rolled out disk on a piece of wax paper and allow it to rest while you roll out the second disk.

Once the second disk is rolled out and resting, gently lift the first disk and using the back of your hands stretch it out as thin as you can without tearing it. Place the disk on greased cookie sheet and cover with wax paper while you finish stretching the second disk.

Once both disks have been stretched, lightly brush them both with milk and sprinkle with poppy seeds. Place disks into pre-heated oven and bake for about 10 minutes. Breads are done when they pull away from baking sheet and have dark spots on some of the bubbled spots. When done, remove from oven and transfer immediately to cooling racks (where they will finish crisping up).

Repeat process with remaining balls of dough.

To serve, break into large pieces and serve with your topping of choice (hummus, yogurt dip, Nutella - yes, I went there...)

Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container to prevent them from picking up moisture from the air.


This post participates in The Daring Bakers. Sarah from All Our Fingers in the Pie was our February 2013 Daring Bakers’ host and she challenges us to use our creativity in making our own Crisp Flatbreads and Crackers!

8 comments:

  1. I find making homemade crackers is so relaxing, and the results are so good. They look perfect Cher, and I never heard of that grape flour. I´m making croissants today and was planning on making all variations, they freeze so well. Have a great day my friend!

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  2. These challenges just reaffirm how easy it is to make delicious food! I think the Nutella was an excellent choice to pair with your Lavash!

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  3. Do wheat flours and all purpose flour share the same requirements when it comes to baking?

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  4. What a great attempt! These lavash crisps look great!

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  5. I've never heard of Chardonnay grape seed flour (is that actually flour made of grape seeds?!) and I never would have thought to eat Nutella with flatbread - but why not! Nutella makes everything better ;)

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  6. Yes, so true we have been snacking on the flatbread and loving it. Sometimes the simple things are the best! Yours look delicous!

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  7. I too find making simple recipes very relxing.
    Your lavash crisps look super tempting

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  8. These lavash look terrific - and isn't it a crime that they charge so much for lavash in the shops when it has next to nothing in it and is so easy to make!

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