Indian Food is absolutely one of my favorites, I still remember when I was first seated in an Indian restaurant in London, how strange was for me all this particular furniture and the strong smell of spices. At first, I didn’t really like it because it was and it is very different from Italian food and quite strong, so your palate needs to adjust in order to fully appreciate the amazing flavors. Many years have passed by and today i can absolutely be sure Indian Cuisine is one of my favorites and very often I do cook some for me and my friends. Today i’m going to talk about Keema Naan, an incredible filled bread that is similar to something we have in Italy.
What is Keema Naan
Naan is a white leavened flatbread that is traditionally cooked in a tandoori. By baking it in a tandoori, the crispy edges and distinct charred sections are created which make it loved and well known to Indian cuisine.
The origin of Naan dates back to ancient times, when it was introduced first alongside the new cooking method of the tandoori by the Delhi sultans. During the 1500s, Naan, it was recorded was incorporated into the breakfast of many different royals, a heritage that remained a delicacy for the next two centuries.
Naan would eventually become a food staple that cut across the class system so that everyone could enjoy this crisp yet soft side dish. In the early 1800s, William Tooke, an English historian brought the recipe and tradition of Naan bread to the Western world, where it remains a beloved part of Indian cuisine.
This distinctive style of flatbread has evolved from a basic form of bread for many to experimental creations by chefs and food enthusiasts today with different flavors and fillings.
For the ingredients, Naan is made by mixing dry yeast, all-purpose flour, salt, yogurt, ghee, sugar, and warm water to make a soft, smooth, and elastic dough which is then baked. However, modern recipes sometimes substitute baking powder for the yeast. Milk can also be used to give the flatbread a greater volume and thickness.
Naan is plausibly now one of the most essential parts of bona fide Indian cuisine around the world and a must-have at homes and restaurants.
Keema, on the other hand, is a form of ground meat or minced meat of mutton, lamb, chicken, or beef. It is grounded thick or thin on the basis of one’s choice. It is mixed with spices and seasonings, cooked, and then stuffed into the Naan.
Typically, Naan is served hot and brushed with ghee or butter.
Turkish Keema Naan
Flatbread has become popular in restaurants and grocery stores around the world. It originated in Egypt but over the years, many other cultures, including Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, India, Armenia, Iran, and Turkey have come up with their own version of this flatbread, each one having slightly different attributes. Let’s see the difference with Keema Naan.
The most amazing thing is that some countries like Turkey, have numerous types of flatbreads, each region or country has its own well-defined version. The most common flatbread is Bazlama which is very similar to Naan by has some differences which am going to list.
For starters, unlike Naan which is baked in a tandoori or oven, Bazlama is baked over an outdoor wood fire and is also known as “village bread” as it is often sold in Turkish market stands.
In preparing this Turkish flatbread, no kneading of the dough is required unlike in other recipes. In Turkish flatbread, you just mix lukewarm water, sugar, salt, and yeast in a bowl. Then stir until all the ingredients dissolve. Add the flour and yogurt and combine them all together to form a shaggy form of dough, making sure there are no dry patches left behind.
The Turkish dough is left to rise for only 30 minutes unlike in other Naan where the minimum time the dough is left to rise is 2 hours.
Another main difference in preparing Turkish Keema naan is that the meat used is mainly turkey, unlike other Naan where mutton or lamb is used.
Another difference between Keema Naan and this Turkish flatbread (Bazlama), is that this Turkish version is made with Greek yogurt, making it super tender and giving it a tasty tang.
Keema Naan Recipe
Keema Naan is one of the most popular stuffed meat flatbreads that can be found on the streets of Pakistan. Ground meat cooked with the flavor of garlic seasoned with herbs and spices, stuffed in a yeast flatbread, and baked in an oven, makes the perfect and mouthwatering flavor for Naan lovers.
However, Keema Naan is very easy and simple to make at home for the enjoyment of the whole family and that is what we are going to do. Here is the recipe to make Keema Naan.
Ingredients for Naan Dough
- 100 ml Luke warm water
- 2 tsp instant yeast
- 1 tbsp. oil
- 1/2 cup of milk
- 1 tsp sugar
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 3 tbsp. yogurt
- 1 pinch of baking soda
Ingredients for Keema Stuffings
- 2 tbsp. oil
- 1 tsp coriander seeds (preferably roasted and crushed)
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp. ginger paste
- 1 tbsp. cumin seeds
- 2 onions (medium size)
- 3 green chilies chopped
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 glass of water
- 1 tsp red chili flakes
- 2 tsp fresh coriander chopped
- 3 tbsp. butter
To prepare Keema stuffing
- Put your minced mutton (or any other meat you prefer to use), red chili powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, and ginger paste in a pan, then add 1 glass of water and mix well.
- Cover and cook in a low medium heat for about 30 minutes to evaporate the water and tender the meat.
- Add the oil and cumin seeds and sauté for a few minute
- Then add the chopped onions, chopped green chili, and fresh coriander and mix all the ingredients well.
- Cover and cook for 5 minutes on low heat.
- Let it cool down before stuffing.
Naan Dough Preparation
- In a bowl, add sugar, yeast, and, lukewarm water and mix well.
- Cover the bowl for 10 minutes (if not using the instant yeast) to activate the yeast.
- Then add baking powder, salt, oil, and, baking soda.
- Sieve the all-purpose flour and add it to the mixture, adding the yoghurt as well and mix well.
- Knead with your hands to make a soft dough. You can transfer it to a previously cleaned flat working area for easier kneading.
- After the dough is done kneading, tap a layer of oil at the top of it to avoid dryness and put it in a bowl, covering it with a clean kitchen towel for 2 hours to allow the dough to rise. Keep it in a warm place.
- After 2 hours, punch the dough and knead again to make it soft and spongy.
- Distribute the dough in small round portions (ball like) with your hands
- Roll out the balls(dough) on a board or clean flat to make round roti and put some keema stuffing on it with a spoon.
- Using your fingers, begin to pinch in the sides of the dough towards the center while at the same time pinching all sides together at the center.
- Seal the Naan dough using a combination of pinching and flattening pressure from the palm of your hand. Repeat this process to all your portions.
- Next, using a mix of your rolling pin and weight from your hands, roll out the Naan to your desired size. Use minimum pressure when rolling to avoid the Keema from ripping through the dough.
- After attaining your desired size, sprinkle over some sesame seeds and onions seeds. Use a rolling pin to simply apply pressure to get the seeds to stick to the dough.
- Using the bottom of a wooden spoon or even your fingers, pierce the Naan with holes (this will let the air in the dough to escape while cooking and the Naan won’t rise).
- If you are using the oven method to bake your Naan, transfer it to a hot pan. Cook it for a few minutes until the bottom forms a brown skin, then transfer it again to a preheated oven and bake at the highest heat for about 5 minutes.
- If you are using the pan method, transfer your naan one by one to a pan heated on medium heat. Cook the Naan and flip it on the other side. Keep repeating this till the Naan is browned adequately.
- Brush your Keema Naan with warm butter immediately after taking off the heat. Enjoy them either alone or accompanied with a drink of your choice.
- Make sure Keema Naan stuffing is dry and not watery, otherwise it will release water and make the Naan soggy after baking them.
- Too much stuffing can break the Naan, but just the right amount.
- Keema Naan can also be cooked on ‘tawa’ using the stovetop.
- Make sure your oven is preheated before placing the Naan for baking. You can also dust the baking pan with a little oil.
- Do not bake the Naan for a long time as this will make it hard.
- Make sure to brush up your Naan with butter immediately after baking to make them soft and chewy.
- The Naan dough should be well settled in order to achieve the very best results, preferably 2 or more hours.
Keema Naan Calories
If you are worried about the calories you take in by eating this delicious meal, rest easy knowing that they are not many. This dish contains dietary fiber which is good for keeping cholesterol levels in check. It is also a good source of vitamins and minerals like Vitamin A which is good for our vision.
You can also make it more vegan-friendly by substituting meat with peas, minced vegetables, or soya mince with onions and tomatoes. Also, try using as little oil as possible to avoid adding unnecessary oil content to your Keema dish. Enjoy!
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