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Manakeesh with Za’atar

I don’t know about you, but I love bread. Any kind, any shape. There is just nothing more comforting than warm, crusty bread, almost straight from the oven. I think that is pretty much a universal truth.

 

This particular type of bread is flat, and a common Levantine Arabic food. It can have various types of toppings, from cheese to lamb to fried eggplant.

Although personally I have no point of reference to compare this lovely bread to, it was taste-tested by two Syrian friends who both confirmed that this recipe is a winner!

 

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In a bowl, add the lukewarm water, and sprinkle the yeast on top. Let sit for five minutes so the yeast can get nice and bubbly.

 

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Dump the flours and salt into a bowl, and add the yeast mixture.

 

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Turn on your mixer on a medium speed. Knead until you have a smooth dough, about five to eight minutes.

 

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There you go! A smooth stretchy dough.

 

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Take the dough off your dough hook, and form into a ball. Oil lightly, so that it won’t stick to the bowl as it rises.

 

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Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and let sit for about an hour and a half, to two hours.

 

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Once the dough is getting close to ready, get your Za’atar, and add olive oil to make a nice paste.

 

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You may also want to get the rest of your dinner ingredients together. Cherry tomatoes and mint leaves, in this case!

 

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Deflate your dough ball, and use a dough scraper or a knife to cut the dough into roughly equal chunks. As you can see, I ended up with about 9 chunks, but I wasn’t particularly precise.

 

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Take a chunk of dough, and roll completely flat using a rolling pin.

 

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With a pastry brush, spread the Za’atar mixture over the flat discs of dough. Place on a baking tray, and put into a pre-heated oven.

 

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And there we are, baked! Don’t you just want to bite into this?

 

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Serve with side-salad, mint leaves, and grilled halloumi for a lovely evening meal. Enjoy!

 

Manakeesh with Za'atar Recipe
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This Levantine flatbread makes for a lovely breakfast, lunch or dinner.
Recipe type: Breads
Cuisine: Middle Eastern
Serves: 10
Ingredients
  • 360 grams strong white flour
  • 130 grams plain flour
  • 20 grams cornflour
  • 15 grams sugar
  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 295 grams lukewarm water
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 tablespon zaatar
  • 3 tablespoon olive oil
Instructions
  1. Sift the flours and salt together in the bowl of a stand mixer, then stir in the sugar.
  2. Pour the lukewarm water into a small bowl, sprinkle the yeast on top and let sit for about 5 minutes.
  3. With the mixer on low, gradually add the yeast mixture and oil to the flour and mix. Turn the mixer to medium and knead until you have a smooth, soft dough, about 5-8 minutes.
  4. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover and set aside in a warm place for a bout 1.5–2 hours, until doubled.
  5. While the dough is rising, place a baking stone on the bottom rack of the oven and preheat to 400°F.
  6. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface, degas gently, the divide into four equal pieces. Cover the pieces and let rise for another half hour.
  7. Flatten each ball, then roll each into a round about 10" in diameter.
  8. Place the rounds on pizza peel (or inverted sheet pan), then top with 2–3 Tbsp of the wild thyme spread, spreading in to within ½" of the edge.
  9. Slide the round onto the baking stone and bake until lightly golden and bubbly, about 8–10 minutes.
  10. Remove from the oven, top as desired (or leave it plain) and serve while warm.

 

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