When I saw a recipe for bread made in a frying pan, I was intrigued. Having made Hong Kong Pork Buns using the same basic bread recipe that I usually use for creating a loaf in the bread machine, I was surprised to see that Batbout again just uses the same basic recipe - it's amazing how many totally different end results you can get with the same dough !
500g plain flour
1 sachet dried yeast
a drizzle of olive oil
320ml warm water
Put all the ingredients in a bowl and knead vigorously by hand for about 15 minutes until it is nice and supple. Alternatively, let the bread machine do all the hard work for you. I was a masochist and did it by hand - it was actually quite soothing ! Leave to rise for at least half an hour.
Give it a final knead then rip off egg-sized pieces of dough and roll them into balls in your hands. Lay out on a baking tray and leave to rise again (cover with a clean tea towel to speed things up).
Roll them out - I think I might have overdone it slightly, they could have done with being a bit thicker so that they could be sliced in half.
Leave to rise for one final time.
While the bread is resting, make some keftas (meatballs) by combining minced meat, a finely chopped onion, salt and some Moroccan spices (ras el hanout, cumin, coriander, paprika, ...)
Squish golfball-sized pieces in your hands to form meatballs.
Fry on all sides or cook on the Optigrill - I like to push it firmly closed to give them a pleasing ridged shape. The flatter shape also makes it easier to put them in the batbout.
Time to cook the bread. Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pan and toss in one or two of the bread discs.
They should puff up as they cook. Use tongs to turn them over and cook on the other side. Stack them up on a plate as you cook them batch by batch - they won't stick once they're cooked.
They're a bit like pancakes - some work better than others, so some have black speckles and less cooked parts where bubbles formed, but it's all part of their rustic charm !
They're a bit like a cross between naan bread and pitta bread. Mine were a bit flat, I think - I've seen pictures online where they are fluffier so I probably should have left them to rise a bit longer and not rolled them out quite so much - but they were still very tasty.
Cut each batbout in half and use your fingers to prise open a pocket. Stuff with Moroccan spiced courgettes (click through to see the recipe) and kefta. Juliette also discovered that, surprisingly, a slice of hamburger cheese is a welcome addition !
The leftover batbout were lovely the next day cold but you can also reheat them in the microwave. They can also be stuffed with tuna salad, cheese spread or just butter.
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If you want to try some other Moroccan cuisine, how about Gazelle Horns, Moroccan Chicken with Apricots & Almonds, Harira or Briouates stuffed with spinach and meat ?