Not wanting to make the traditional forms, pizza or foccacia, I searched for other possibilities, finding two candidates worth trying.
The first recipe was for a Sourdough Whole Wheat Flatbread. Sourdough starter and whole wheat flour are combined and allowed to rest for about an hour. Then the dough is divided into eight portions, rolled out, then cooked in a hot skillet. To be honest, while delicious, these were more like flour tortillas.
So, I happened upon another type of flatbread, also cooked in a skillet, but in the oven rather than on top of the stove. This recipe is from Mark Bittman, and is definitely not a tortilla. For the basic technique, you mix whole wheat flour and water and let it sit for at least an hour. Then, you heat a skillet in a hot oven, adding olive oil, sliced onions, and chopped fresh rosemary. When the skillet is hot, you pour in the flour mixture, and baked for 30-40 minutes. This produces a very tasty flatbread with roasted onions.
Of the two recipes, the second was my favorite, and I will make it again, fine-tuning the baking time and temperature, and experimenting with other herbs.
Keep an eye on Zorra's website for the flatbread roundup, coming soon.
- 1 cup sourdough starter
- 1½ cups whole wheat flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1½ tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons water
- Add the starter, flour, salt, baking soda, and olive oil to the bowl of a stand mixer. Mix using the paddle attachment until ingredients are combined. Switch to the dough hook and on low speed, add water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until a dough ball forms. Knead for about 3 minutes.
- Transfer dough to an oiled bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and place in a warm area to rise/rest for one hour.
- Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces and roll out as thinly as possible on a floured surface with a rolling pin.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Cook flatbreads, one at a time, for about 3 minutes on each side, until cooked with brown spots.
Makes 8 flatbreads
Easy Whole Grain Flatbread
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 large onion, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary
- Put the flour into a bowl; add salt; then slowly add 1 1/2 cups water, whisking to eliminate lumps. Cover with a towel, and let sit while oven heats, or as long as 12 hours. The batter should be about the consistency of thin pancake batter.
- When ready to bake, heat the oven to 425°F. Put the oil in a 12-inch rimmed pizza pan or skillet (along with the onion and rosemary if you’re using them) and put in the heated oven. Wait a couple of minutes for the oil to get hot, but not smoking; the oil is ready when you just start to smell it. Carefully remove the pan (give the onions a stir); then pour in the batter, and return the skillet to the oven. Bake 30 to 40 minutes, or until the flatbread is well browned, firm, and crisp around the edges. (It will release easily from the pan when it’s done.) Let it rest for a couple minutes before cutting it into wedges or squares.