Central Asian Bread
This post has been a long time coming. Oh my goodness! Any of you Americans that have traveled to Central Asia or my expat friends who live here in Central Asia can attest that the bread here (know
n as naan- pronounced “non”, tandoori naan, flatbread, “lepyoshka” specifically in Russian) is hands down UH-MAZING!!!! It’s so hard to explain and describe. Now we have not had the opportunity to actually learn how to make it ourselves, (like with other dishes) but you can buy it fresh at any local “magazine” (aka corner shop), any bakery, any grocery stores, etc and it is cheap too! So delicious. Themost common one is the round bread that kinda looks like pizza dough (pictured in the middle near the bottom in the above pic). While my Mom was here we were at the large bazaar (like a flea market kind of) and I pointed out a metal “stamp” with a wooden handle (second picture) and said “Look Mom, this is how they put the design on the bread we buy” and sure enough, it is commonly on most round breads you can buy. The breads that are at the Georgian restaurants (the country, not the State 😜) have delicious cheese in the middle and sometimes fried egg… YUMMMM! We can buy it fresh everyday and bread culturally is with every meal regardless of the meal. Here are some facts- traditionally it is cooked in a clay tandoori oven by being slapped on the inside. It sits in a basket on the table, and is always pattern-side up. The design stamp in the middle is not just for decorative reasons, it also releases the steam so it stops the center of the bread from rising. It is always torn by hand. Anyways, another little glimpse into every day life here!