Traditional Tadzhik Flat Bread – Lepeshka
This traditional bread you can find in any Central Asian open market. This bread made from just water, yeast and white flour, the secret is in long kneading process which makes this bread airy and puffy you also use sifted flour as it brings this airy structure to Lepeshka. Traditionally this bread is made in a large open fire stove called Tandir.
Of course the taste and aroma of this bread made this way cannot be compared with baking it in the modern oven however it comes tasting just as good as if it was baked in the traditional way if you fallow this step by step recipe.
For 2 Lepeshka you will need:
- 1 teaspoon dry active yeast
- 2 teaspoons of sugar
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- 1 ½ cup of warm water
- 3-3 ½ cups of bread flour
- 1 egg beaten egg whites for coating the Lepeshka and give it a golden color
- Sesame seeds for garnishing
In the bowl combine warm water, sugar and yeast and let it sit for 10 minutes.
It is ready when you see the yeast building into a foam.
Place this liquid into large mixing bowl and start slow adding sifted flour,
add flour ½ cups at a time until you form it into the ball.
Bring your dough to your working surface sprinkled with flour and start kneading it. Continue kneading it for at least 10 minutes or longer, the longer you do it the better your bread will taste.
To check if dough is ready push on it with your finger and it has to bounce back. Place your dough into the bowl, cover it with plastic and let it rest for 2 hours, as it has to double in size.
Divide your raised dough into two pieces and form Lepeshka dished out the middle of the bread as it is showing below.
Cover your bread with dry towel and let it rise for another 30 minutes or until it will puff up. Then using a fork make random wholes for decoration.
Brash your Lepeshka with beaten egg white and sprinkle it with sesame seeds before sending it to the oven.
Bake your Lepeshka at 400F for 15 minutes or until it turns golden in color.
In Central Asia this bread is usually served with fresh fruits and green tea, it is also a tradition to serve it with Lamb Shish Kebab or you can serve it with Lean Pork Shish Kebabs.