Tajik Bread is also made in Uzbekistan and is called non or naan. Although, it is not the same naan bread that I am accustomed to. This round beautiful bread is typically made in a tandoor or clay oven. You can actually get pretty good results using your oven at home.
Bread in both Tajikistan and Uzbekistan is somewhat sacred. You would never cut it with a knife, it is always torn. You never set the loaf upside down as it is considered to be bad luck. If you were to drop it on the floor, it would be set up high for beggars and birds. If someone is leaving on a journey, a bite of non is taken and the loaf is then saved until they safely return. Lastly, if a Tajik has food but no non, he will say he is out of food.
This Tajik bread recipe takes some time to make but the result is well worth the effort. You can use a fork to make the decoration in the middle or I used a cookie cutter with a design but as you can see it didn't come out perfect but that's okay, it tasted yummy!
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- 1 cup hot water
- 1 cup plain yogurt
- 1 tsp sugar
- 2 tsp instant yeast
- 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 egg beaten with 1 Tbsp milk
- 1 Tbsp black sesame seeds for decoration
- Heat up some water until very hot. Then mix with the cold yogurt. Mixing the two should result in a warm mixture. Stir in the sugar, yeast, and whole wheat flour. Let it rest for about an hour.
- Next stir in the flour and salt. Knead the dough together until a smooth ball forms. Add a tad bit more flour or water as needed. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise until doubled in size, about 2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 500F. Prepare the egg and milk wash. Then, divide the dough into 8 pieces and press flat. Make the indentation in the middle with the bottom of a glass or I used my cookie cutter with out cutting it all the way through. If you use a glass, you can make your design with a fork. Dust with flour as needed.
- Brush the top with egg wash, then sprinkle a few black sesame seeds in the middle,
- Bake for approx 20 minutes but watch them. Enjoy!