My basic flatbreads recipe produces very crispy, cracker-like flatbreads which are fabulous to scoop up dips, spicy chutneys, or the like.
This variation uses yoghurt which makes softer breads. They can be used like burritos for my Mexican Beef recipe or as here, filled with lamb, or really any filling of your choice (see footnote).
Serves: 4 -6
For the flatbreads:
- A mixed palmful of coriander seeds, cumin seeds, and Szechuan peppercorns
- 125g strong white bread flour
- Ground sea salt to taste
- A small amount of fresh chives, snipped with scissors into teeny bits
- Plain yoghurt
- 4 tablespoons warm water
- Plain flour, for kneading/rolling
For the lamb:
- Vegetable oil
- 2 lamb chops
- Salt and Szechuan pepper
For the cabbage:
- 3-4 large leaves of cabbage (Hisbi, plain, or red all work well), with hard centre core removed
For the tomato:
- 1 large-ish tomato
For the raita:
- Plain yoghurt
- 2 cloves of garlic, finely crushed with some salt to make a thick paste
- 2 small shallots (or, 1/2 of a banana shallot), very finely chopped
- 1/4 cucumber, sliced lengthways, seeds scooped out with a teaspoon, and finely chopped
- 1 lime, juice only
- Fresh coriander leaves and fronds (no stems), chopped roughly
- Fresh mint leaves, ripped or chopped roughly
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- 2 non-stick frying pans, 1 small and 1 large
- A mortar and pestle
- 1 large mixing bowl
- A dampened tea towel (wet it with hot water, then wring it out thoroughly)
- A rolling pin
- A palette knife
- 3 plates
- Kitchen paper
- A chopping board and sharp knife
- Citrus fruit juicer
- Cooling rack
- 4 bowls, for serving
- Toast the spices in a very hot, small, dry frying pan for just 2 minutes or so until they smell gorgeous. Tip into a mortar & pestle and grind well, then pour into a large mixing bowl.
- Measure the bread flour into the spices. Grind over some salt to your taste, add the chives, and make a well in the middle.
- Add 2 over-heaped tablespoons of yoghurt and 4 tablespoons warm water to the centre of the bowl. Gently stir with a fork, then mix with your hands until it comes together. Knead in the bowl until it’s smooth and no longer sticking to your fingers, adding plain flour if too sticky, and more warm water if too dry. Cover the bowl with a dampened tea towel, and leave for 15-20 minutes in a warm, draught-free place to rest.
- Heat your larger frying pan with a bit of oil until well hot, almost smoking. Trim and thinly slice the lamb chops, season with salt and Szechuan pepper, then fry about 2 minutes until browned all over. Remove to a plate.
- Reheat your small frying pan to a very high heat. Meanwhile, roll out the dough on a floured surface until it’s quite thin. Use the palette knife to make oval-ish shapes that will fit the bottom of your small pan.
- Dry-fry one at a time, for 2 – 2 &1/2 minutes on each side, until puffed up and browned. Remove to a plate, and repeat until all breads are grilled. Cover with kitchen paper. (If oven-proof, this plate can be put into a 50 C oven to keep the breads warm until serving.)
- Roll up like a sausage and finely shred the cabbage leaves. Add some more oil to the larger pan, and fry the cabbage on a very high heat for a couple of minutes until crispy. Remove to a plate lined with kitchen paper.
- Wipe the larger pan of extra oil, if any, with kitchen paper, and keep it on a very high heat. Slice the tomato slightly thickly, and fry a couple of minutes until quite soft. Remove to a serving bowl.
- Mix 4 over-heaped tablespoons of yoghurt in a small serving bowl with the crushed & salted garlic, shallot, cucumber, lime juice, fresh coriander, mint, and paprika, plus more salt to your taste.
- To serve, put the lamb and cabbage in small serving bowls. Serve alongside the flatbreads with the raita and tomato, so everyone can create their own wraps.
I’ve said before that Szechuan pepper is my new favourite ingredient, because of its aromatic, almost fruity flavour. If you don’t have this, regular freshly ground black pepper will always suffice.
You don’t have to use cumin and coriander in the breads if you don’t like those flavours. They go well with the raita, but if you’d prefer to fill these breads with something else, then of course use the spices and herbs you think go best with your filling(s).
I recently served these flatbreads with mini-meatballs (with a square of mozarella cheese in the centre) in a spicy tomato sauce, with roasted sweet peppers. Everyone loved making meatball wraps and they were perfect party food.