COOKING TIP: How to Bake Flatbread

July 12, 2007

If you don’t have a pizza stone, peel, or parchment paper, don’t worry. Simply sprinkle cornmeal generously across a baking sheet, place the dough on top, and slide the baking sheet onto the oven shelf. Cornmeal keeps the flatbread from sticking and gives it a wonderful crunch.


Rosemary Flatbread

May 16, 2007

rrrosemary4.jpg

This is a gem of a flatbread. Serve it as an addictive, last-minute appetizer or tuck it into a salad of mozzarella bufala and roasted red peppers. The better the sea salt, the more it will rise. You must use high-gluten flour. DO NOT try this with soft-wheat flour like White Lily. White Lily is fabulous for biscuits—remind me to post my buttermilk biscuit recipe—but it turns flatbread into a dull, dense cracker. If you don’t have a pizza stone and peel, you can bake it on parchment paper on a heavy baking sheet. The basic recipe has endless variations. More to come on this one. Sam

PS For flatbread, I always use King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour. You can find pizza stones and peels at places like Williams-Sonoma. See Blogroll for links.

2 cups all-purpose, high-gluten flour
1 tablespoon stone-ground cornmeal
3/4 teaspoon sea salt, divided [preferably Guerande fleur de sel]
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
3/4 cup warm water

Place a large pizza stone on the middle shelf of the oven and preheat to 550 degrees F.

In a food processor fitted with a plastic blade, combine flour, cornmeal, salt, and rosemary. With the processor running, slowly pour in 1 tablespoon olive oil, then just enough water to form a ball.

Cut two 12-inch rounds of parchment paper and place on two pizza peels. Knead the dough two or three times and cut in half. On a lightly floured pastry board, roll or stretch each half into a 10-inch round and transfer to parchment paper. Spread evenly with the remaining 2 tablespoons oil and sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon sea salt. Slide the flatbread and parchment paper onto the stone and bake for 10 minutes or until browned. Slice with a pizza cutter.
Makes two 10-inch rounds.