Friday, March 11, 2016

Man’oushe: Za’atar Flatbread

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Man’oushe: Za’atar Flatbread
David, 11 Mar 

I’ve been thinking about man’oushe for years, ever since I went to Lebanon and someone handed me a warm flatbread right out of the wood-fired oven. It was the perfect snack: A warm, slightly supple dough slathered with za’atar, an herbaceous seasoning blend punctuated with sumac and sesame seeds. It has a slightly astringent flavor, due to the tang of sumac and the sharpness of the wild herbs, and I loved it, but never attempted to make man’oushe, the popular street snack.
I used to have one of those pizza stones, but I never liked it. It got stained, which didn’t appeal to my OCD nature, and worse, made a horrible screeching noise when dragged across the wire oven rack. So I decided to go out for pizza, even though every once in a while I have the urge to make a pizza or two at home.
But my interest what rekindled when I read about baking steels, heavy-duty slabs of metal that promise amazing heat conductivity, and decided to buy one. The one I got was pretty heavy – there goes my baggage allowance! – but I was hopeful that my doughs would have the same crisp, blistered crust that you get when you go out for pizza.


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