Flatbread

At it's barest definition, flatbread is any bread that is flat. Many flatbreads are unleavened-meaning they don't rise-but some are simply rolled out before being baked. Flatbreads take center stage in many cuisines around the globe. Mexico has tortillas, Ethiopia has injera, India has naan and the Middle East has pitas. These easy-to-handle breads are usually a smart choice when you want to eat on the go or avoid dirtying utensils during a meal, which makes them a great party food choice. The F&W guide to flatbreads explores all the different varieties with amazing recipes and tips for baking the best homemade versions.

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Hot Honey–Carrot Flatbreads with Basil Chermoula

The former chef of 232 Bleecker in New York City, Gramercy Tavern alumna Suzanne Cupps gives silky, sweet-spicy honey-glazed roasted carrots the main-dish treatment, serving them atop ricotta-smeared flatbread with a drizzle of bright basil chermoula. Use leftover chermoula to top sliced tomatoes, grilled eggplant, or tofu.

Loaded Pita Nachos with Lentil Chili and Feta Queso

In this recipe for plant-based nachos, pita chips are drizzled with a feta queso and then laden with lentil chili, harissa-spiked pickled cabbage, and a dollop of creamy labneh. Make the chips, queso, and cabbage ahead of time to help this dish come together easily, or use store-bought pita chips, if desired. The tangy feta queso gets its smooth body from the addition of red lentils and is a versatile ingredient on its own, says Cassie Piuma of Sarma in Somerville, Massachusetts: "We use this queso in mac and cheese and sub it in as a sauce for eggplant parm or moussaka."

Ragi Roti

These flatbreads made with hearty, versatile millet flour are equal parts crispy and chewy, with whole cumin seeds, fresh herbs, and aromatics cooked right into the dough. The center holes allow steam to escape, resulting in a crispier roti. While they’re perfect for sopping up dal, these roti make a filling snack or lunch topped with creamy yogurt swirled with spicy tomato achaar or Indian pickle.

Grilled Vegetable Flatbread with Smoked Almond Muhammara

Rating: Unrated
2
In addition to turning heads at your cookouts, this vegetarian masterpiece is packed with make-ahead options and smart shortcuts. Make the Smoked Almond Muhammara up to 3 days in advance and stash it in the fridge; skip a step and substitute 2 cups jarred roasted peppers for the grilled bell peppers, plus about 1/4 cup liquid from the jar. If you’re working with a small grill, cut the flatbread in half, or use lavash instead.

Masala Paneer Kathi Rolls

Rating: Unrated
1
Fresh cabbage salad adds a sharp, acidic crunch to these warmly spiced, vegetable-filled rolls. These rolls can be served filled or on an assembly line for guests to make their own.

Chickpea Doubles with Tamarind and Scotch Bonnet Pepper Sauce

Rating: Unrated
5
Traditional Trinidadian doubles are served open-faced and quickly wrapped in wax paper, letting the bara steam, and keeping the spicy filling piping hot. Try leftover tamarind sauce in margaritas, drizzled over fresh mangoes, or with roast pork.
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More Flatbread

Grilled Flatbreads with Broccoli Rabe, Ricotta, and Rosemary Honey

Rating: Unrated
3
Use a less expensive clover honey for the rosemary-infused honey here. Heating the honey will release much of its fragrance as it takes on the floral, piney taste of rosemary. Use leftovers in cocktails or with a cheese plate.

Lachuch with Labneh and Za’atar

“Oooh,” I breathed as a chef ladled a fluffy white substance into a pan. I watched as the surface bubbled up into an improbable pitted pancake that looked like the surface of the moon.When the man deftly flipped it out of the pan, it flopped onto the counter, seeming almost alive. I reached out a tentative finger; it was soft and pillowy, with a texture unlike any bread I’ve encountered before.You can find the Yemenite bread, lachuch, in every market in Israel. There’s something so hypnotic about watching the bubbles form and break that it’s little wonder there’s usually someone standing mesmerized before the flames.Yemenites eat the bread with soup (they are masters of the form), but young Israeli chefs have been finding all manner of uses for this deliciously yeasty bread. My favorite lachuch recipe iteration is a breakfast dish: covered with cool labneh while it’s still warm, then drizzled with olive oil and slathered with the herbal mixture za’atar.You can buy za’atar in any Middle Eastern spice shop. But it’s a blend, and if you like the flavor you might want to play around with various herbs to come up with one of your very own. The constant ingredients are sumac, salt, and sesame seeds. Dried thyme is usually used (za’atar is actually the Arabic word for thyme), as well as oregano or mint. Cumin is often part of the mix. Personally, I find I like the flavor that fresh oregano adds the mixture. But if you’re in a different mood, you can spread the lachuch with honey, with jam, or fold some cheese, tomatoes, and onions in for a lovely little sandwich.This spongy bread is remarkably versatile—and incredibly easy to make. Aside from allowing the yeast a few hours to work its magic, you’re basically making pancakes, except you don’t have to bother with flipping. Just like with pancakes, pay close attention to the heat of your pan. You’ll likely need to reduce the heat to give the bubbly top time to set before the bottom burns, and be sure to let the pan cool in between batches. But most importantly—don’t sweat it. Making lachuch is like riding a bike; once you get the hang of it, there will be no stopping you.

Vadouvan Naan Bread with Salted Coconut Butter

Regular butter is fine but coconut-infused butter is beautiful. Chef Ludo Fefèbvre pairs it with grilled, homemade flatbread seasoned with a toasted-allium spice blend. Try it also on vegetables, chicken, seafood, Triscuits. Slideshow: More Bread and Biscuit Recipes