Are you looking for an exotic and delicious naan to tantalise your taste buds? If so, then you should try this recipe for homemade Peshwari naan bread. Not only is it really tasty, but it's also easy to make and can be served alongside your favourite curry, or as an appetiser.
What is Peshwari naan?
Peshwari naan is a type of flatbread from South Asia. It's typically enjoyed as a side dish to curries or just as a snack on it's own. It's quite unique to traditional naans in that it's stuffed with a sweet filling, often containing ingredients like flaked almonds, desiccated coconut, raisons, nuts, spices and honey.
The naan is then baked in a hot tandoor oven until it's golden brown and crispy with a fluffy centre. Peshwari naans are particularly popular in British Indian restaurants.
Looking for some curries to serve with your naan? Try this quick chicken karahi or this aromatic beef curry with coconut milk and butter rice. For a lovely drink alongside your curry and naan, definitely give this strawberry lassi a go, it's especially popular with kids!
What's to love about these naans
- You can have freshly baked restaurant-style naans at home
- Flavour-packed with a hint of sweetness
- The dough as well as the cooked naans freeze well. Can be prepared in advance
Key ingredients notes and substitutions
Plain white flour - This can be swapped for strong white bread flour.
Instant yeast - It's imperative that you check whether your yeast is still fresh and in date, otherwise it won't develop.
Sultanas - If you only have raisons to hand, this will be a perfect replacement for the sultanas. Sultanas are slightly softer and plumper, so should remain your first choice.
Honey - We use honey in the filling for it's lovely flavour, but you can replace it with golden syrup.
How to make Peshwari naan - Quick summary
To make the dough:
- Let the yeast develop in 200ml warm water and a tablespoon of sugar for 10-15min and a froth has developed on the surface. The water should roughly be around 45C/115F to activate the yeast. Too hot water will kill the yeast, too cold and it won't activate.
- Mix the dry ingredients together. Make a well in the centre of the flour and add the water-yeast mixture.
- Bring the dough together with your hands. It will be wet and sticky but don't be tempted to add more flour. Kneed for 10-15 minutes until you have a soft, smooth, stretchy dough. Alternatively, you can knead it in a stand mixer with the dough attachment for 10 minutes. The latter is our preferred choice.
- Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and leave in a warm area for an hour.
- After an hour the dough should have risen to roughly double in size. Tip it out onto a floured surface and punch the dough down to get rid of the air. Divide into four equal pieces.
- Flour each piece, roll into balls and place on a tray. Cover and let it rest for another hour.
To make the filling:
- In a food processor, whizz together all the ingredients for the filling. You should end up with a pliable paste.
To make the glaze:
- Stir together all the ingredients for the glaze and set aside.
To assemble the naans:
- On a floured surface, flatten each naan dough ball out into a rough circle of about 15cm diameter. You can use either your hands, or a rolling pin.
- Take a quarter of the peshwari naan filling and roll into in a rough ball. Place the ball in the middle of the dough circle.
- Bring the edges of the circle up and around the filling, like a parcel. Gather the edges together at the top and pinch together to seal the filling in.
- Turn the ball upside down so the sealed end is now on the bottom. Roll out into a rough tear drop or oval shape. You want a thickness of about 5mm (⅕'').
- Turn the naan over halfway through rolling to ensure both sides are floured and not sticking to the surface. Repeat this process for each ball of dough.
- Throw each naan back and forth between your hands to get rid of any excess flour.
- Place a frying pan over a high heat and heat fully. Once the pan is searing hot, turn it down to medium-high heat and add the first naan to the dry pan (no oil or butter).
- Fry the naan until bubbles start to form on the surface. Flip the naan over and briefly fry the other side until golden with some brown spots. Regulate the heat accordingly, if it's browning too fast, turn the heat down a smidge.
- Keep the cooked naans on a plate, covered with some foil. Brush each naan with the glaze, scatter over chopped coriander and serve warm.
- The dough can be made 24 hours in advance and kept in the fridge.
- The dough will also freeze well for up to 3 months. Remove from the freezer the day before and keep in the fridge to defrost.
- The cooked naans will keep well in the fridge for up to 3 days.
- Reheat by brushing some water on both sides. Place on a baking try and warm in a 180C/356F/gas mark 4 oven for 4-5 minutes, or until piping hot.
Serving suggestions for Peshwari naan
- You can brush the naans with the glaze as set out in the recipe, but for less sweetness, you can brush it with plain melted butter instead
- Scatter over some chopped coriander
- Sprinkle over some flaked almonds
- Sprinkle with coconut flakes
- Serve alongside any curry of choice, or as an appetiser
Pesh-wa-ri. The accent is on the second syllable.
Not at all, it's very mild in fact as it contains no spicy ingredients. This makes it the perfect accompaniment for a hot curry.
It's not intended just as a dessert, but can be enjoyed as a dessert due to it's sweetness.
It originates from the Peshawar region in northern Pakistan.
Yes you can. You can cook them the day before and keep in the fridge overnight. Don't add the glaze at this point.
To heat them, splash both sides of each naan with a little water, place them on a baking tray and bake in a preheated oven at 180C/356F/gas mark 4 for 4-5 minutes until warmed through. Brush with the butter glaze and scatter over chopped coriander.
Other great side dishes for curries
Homemade Peshwari naan
For the dough
- 200 millilitre warm water - 45C/115F
- 1.5 teaspoon dry instant yeast
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 300 grams plain flour - plus extra for rolling
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
For the Peshwari filling
- 90 grams flaked almonds
- 60 grams sultanas
- 2 tablespoons desiccated coconut
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon Greek yoghurt - or cream
- 30 millilitre melted butter
For the glaze
- 80 millilitre melted butter
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 2 tablespoons sultanas
- 2 tablespoons flaked almonds
- fresh coriander for scattering over - optional
To make the dough
- In a jug, add the 200ml warm water. The water should be around 45C/115F. Sprinkle over the yeast and sugar. Give it a quick stir and set aside for 10-15 minutes until frothy on top
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix together the flour, salt and baking powder
- Make a well in the centre of the flour and pour in the water-yeast mix. Bring the ingredients together with your hands. It will be a sticky, wet dough but don't be tempted to add more flour.Kneed the dough until soft and stretchy, about 10-15 minutes. Because the dough is so sticky, it helps to tip the bowl towards you and kneed inside the bowl, providing you're using a very large bowl.Alternatively, use your stand mixer with the dough hook attachment and kneed for 10 minutes. This is our preferred method.
- Form a rough ball with the dough and place it inside a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with a kitchen towel and leave in a warm area for one hour
- After an hour, it should have more or less doubled in size. Tip the dough out onto a floured surface and punch it down. Slice the ball into two equal halves. Half each half again so you end up with four equal sized pieces
- Cover each piece with flour and shape into a ball. Place on a tray and cover with a kitchen towel. Leave to rest for another hour
To make the filling
- Whilst you're waiting for the dough to rest, make the Peshwari filling
- In a food processer, whiz together the almonds flakes, sultanas, desiccated coconut, honey, Greek yoghurt and melted butter into a pliable paste. Set aside
To make the glaze
- Mix together the melted butter, honey, sultanas and flaked almonds. Set aside
To assemble the Peshwari naans
- On a floured surface, flatten each dough ball into a rough circle of about 15cm in diameter. You can use either your hands, or a rolling pin
- Take a quarter of the filling and roll into in a rough ball. Place the ball in the middle of the dough circle. Bring the edges of the circle up and around the filling, like a parcel. Gather the edges together at the top and pinch together to seal the filling in. See blog post for photos
- Turn the ball upside down so the sealed end is now on the bottom. Roll out into a rough tear drop or oval shape. You want a thickness of about 5mm (⅕''). Turn the naan over halfway through rolling to ensure both sides are floured and not sticking to the surface. Repeat this process for each ball of doughThrow each naan back and forth between your hands to get rid of any excess flour
- Place a frying pan over a high heat and heat fully. Once the pan is searing hot, turn it down to medium-high heat and add the first naan to the dry pan (no oil or butter)
- Fry the naan until bubbles start to form on the surface. Flip the naan over and briefly fry the other side until golden with some brown spots. Regulate the heat accordingly, if it's browning too fast, turn the heat down a smidge
- Keep the cooked naans on a plate, covered with some foil. Brush each naan with the glaze, scatter over chopped coriander and serve warm
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