Sunday, September 20, 2009

Round Things


So right, this is where we left off: round things = good for Jewish new year.

This recipe is one I've been dying to post since my birthday (see birthday feast below). This dough came out amazingly. It is the best dough recipe I have ever made. I don't know if it would work in super huge batches (ie: in a cafe, like the one I used to bake for), but if it's just you're buddies and you, and you love grilled round things, well, it is awesome.

Also, I should mention, that although you can definitely attempt this recipe without a food processor, the food processor is what makes this process a delight- super simple, easy, fast, and almost foolproof. But seriously, if you lack the crazy equipment or want to feel closer to your dough without sending it through a super fast spinning dough blade, do it your way. Just want to clarify that this way is BETTER!!!

I should also mention that this dough recipe yielded eight 7-9" rounds (or less-than-round oblongs) of grilled flatbread, and one personal calzone, made a few days later.
ALSO, this dough will sit in the fridge, wrapped in plastic wrap, for about a week after production. So you don't have to use it right away. In fact, I found that it became more elastic after sitting in the fridge for three days, at which point Matt and I created round 2 of grilled flatbread (photos above).

One more tip: it wasn't until a baking expert (who trained me) told me otherwise, but I want to make clear something about dealing with yeast doughs. I always thought the water you use should be warm, b/c yeast likes a warm environment. Well, if your water is too warm, you will kill your yeast. If it is too cold, it will only take longer to rise. So, when in doubt, go for cooler.

1/4 c olive oil
2 c water, closer to cool than warm
3 c unbleached flour
1 1/4 whole wheat flour, plus more in case sticky dough
scant 1 T sugar
2 t salt
1 package dry yeast (2 1/4 t dry yeast)

1. In a liquid measuring cup, measure oil and water.
2. In food processor with plastic dough blade, pulse dry ingredients.
3. With food processor on, slowly pour wet mixture in through tube on top. Mixture should begin to clear sides of container. Stop mixing, feel dough. It should be sticky but not like super duper sticky. If it is tooo sticky, you may add some more flour, by the tablespoon, mixing and feeling after every addition.
4. Ball your dough, place in a lightly greased bowl, and cover with plastic wrap. Stick in an unused oven, or anywhere out of a draft, and allow to rise about 2 hrs.
5. After rising, dough can be cut into 8-10 equal sized balls. These should rise in this shape. If you are going to use them right away, let rise on a baking sheet. If you are not going to use them right away (ie: in a few days, or even later in the evening), allow to rise wrapped loosely in plastic, and place in the fridge. They can last in there for about a week.

Grilling the Flatbread!

Have your charcoal grill reach medium heat. Stretch dough to desired thickness right before grilling. It's a fast process, but you can do it! Have all of your preferred toppings ready. We did zucchini, grated egg, mint and parm on one, tomatoes and fresh basil from the garden on another... Also, we brush both sides of the bread with garlic oil, made from steeping grated garlic in olive oil for about an hour.

1. Grill side 1 of dough, until dry bubbles begin to form.
2. Flip dough to grill side 2. Top right away.
3. Remove before burning.
**Tip: you may cover the flatbread with an aluminum pan or grill cover so toppings have a chance to cook a bit on bread before it burns!

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