Healthy Living: Easy Naan Pizzas
I absolutely love naan bread. Every time I eat at an Indian restaurant, I can’t wait to tear into the puffy, teardrop-shaped flatbread that comes to the table piping hot and slathered in ghee. Authentic naan, I recently learned, is made by throwing disks of dough onto the side of a cone-shaped tandoor oven (whose temperatures reach up to 900 F). Because it cooks so quickly, the naan comes out covered in bubbles from the intense heat. It’s delicious eaten on its own, but it’s more commonly torn and used to scoop up side dishes like subzi chana (spicy chickpeas with onions) or dal (split peas).
But these days, you don’t have to go to an Indian restaurant to eat naan bread. You can actually buy some pretty great naan at the grocery store, like Stonefire Authentic Flatbreads. Which I buy regularly to make simple flatbread pizzas (more recipes below) or just to warm and cut up to serve with party dips like my White Bean and Basil or Lemony Roasted Eggplant. When Stonefire recently hosted a cooking class in NYC, I jumped at the chance to go. An evening of naan, cooking, and bubbly? Sign me up!
The evening was a blast. We got to taste test their three different types of naan (regular, whole wheat, and garlic) and learned how to make everything from individual pizzas (like one with olive & feta salsa, and another with potatoes, gorgonzola, and bacon) to paninis to dessert! Who ever dreamed of making dessert from naan? The chef even taught us to make naan bread pudding with cardamom cream. Who knew?
But I have to say, flatbread pizzas are still my favorite. I love topping whole wheat naan with whatever veggies I have in the fridge – it could be tomatoes, spinach, red onions, zucchini, olives, whatever really! – and maybe some chicken sausage and a bit of cheese (mozzarella’s the best because it melts so well, though goat cheese and fontina are also delicious). This is also a really fun dish to prepare with kids, as they can each make their own personal pizza.
Once you’re done assembling, pop them in the oven for about 10 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and the naan is golden. Put the pizzas on a cutting board, cut into pieces, and serve with a big, green salad. And voila! – an easy, healthy dinner in under half an hour. Now all you have to do is pour yourself a glass of wine and enjoy!
(Note: This is not a sponsored post. I only write about things I feel passionate about and products I love.)
EASY FLATBREAD PIZZASServes 2
These are so incredibly easy to make, and it’s entirely up to you what you decide to add onto them. For the pizzas pictured, I added spinach, yellow grape tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella on all of them, and red onions, sundried tomatoes, and olives on half. Feel free to add whatever strikes your fancy.
Two whole wheat naan flatbreads (I used Stonefire)
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for drizzling
Halved grape tomatoes (yellow or red)
Thinly sliced red onion
Chopped sundried tomatoes
Sliced kalamata olives
Herbs (like basil, thyme, or oregano)
Sliced chicken sausage
Sliced mozzarella (or goat cheese, or grated fontina)
Salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 450 F.
Place the naans on a baking sheet. Brush each with olive oil. Top with your desired toppings – start with the veggies and herbs, then add sausage if desired, then end with cheese. Season with salt and pepper.
Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the naan is golden and crisp around the edges. Drizzle with olive oil and topped with additional chopped herbs if desired. Cut into pieces and serve.
GLUTEN-FREE VARIATION: Glutino makes individual frozen gluten-free pizza crusts. Follow the same instructions using one of those, though you may have to add on some additional cooking time.
My name is Anna Watson Carl. In a word, I love food, I love France, and I love throwing dinner parties. Over the years, I've worked as a personal chef, taught cooking classes, edited cookbooks, written for magazines, tested and styled recipes, and traveled whenever opportunity has arisen. But at heart, there's nothing I love more than sharing a meal with friends around the yellow table.
For me, cooking has always been a way of life. As a (mildly precocious) ten-year old, I planned and prepared a four-course Valentine's dinner for my parents, birthing a lifelong passion for dinner parties. That was just the beginning. I've been cooking ever since, whipping up souffles at a chateau in Burgundy, searing filet mignon for a wealthy client's dog (bizarre, but true), butchering ducks for confit de canard in Paris, baking the night shift in Nashville, and bathing the floor of my NYC apartment in turkey brine...the story continues....more
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