For many, an Indian meal isn’t perfect without a freshly made, poofy naan to gobble up all the gravy, whether coconut-scented Peshwari or a thinly sliced keema. It’s a bread with a long tradition, first stated by Amir Kushrau, an Indo-Persian poet in 1300AD, a history that has changed dramatically over the centuries.
From the royal plate to UK shores:
Traditionally, Naan was made in a tandoor oven with flour, fermentation, sugar, salt, clarified butter, water, and sour cream. Its invention is disputed: some say it was the outcome of a test after the advent of fermentation from Egypt. However, many assume it was created by the Mughals & Persians – and its name comes from the Persian word for ‘food.’
The Naan quickly garnered considerable attention, even gaining royal approval: it was presumably a popular breakfast meal of the Royals during India’s Mughal period in the 1520s, served with kebabs or keema.
Naan was not a simple dish for the masses back then; it was a delicacy enjoyed only by royals and noble families. Few people knew how to make Naan, a highly valued skill.
The Naan didn’t make it to the United Kingdom until the twentieth century: when Veeraswamy opened in England in 1926, the Naan was on the menu. It’s found a special place in our soul since then, and it’s not just plain Naan that you’ll discover in Indian restaurants across the United Kingdom. Most restaurants also offer Naan layered with cream cheese, vilely flavoured with garlic & aromatic herbs, or roughly chopped chilli for a kick.
The Naan, which is famous for Indian cuisine food softness, fluffiness, and unique flavour, inspired the development of other varieties. Different kinds of Naan became popular, depending on whether they were crammed or encased with particular garnishes. Among the numerous types are:
- Plain Naan – the simplest form, rubbed with clarified butter.
- Garlic Naan – minced garlic and butter on top.
- Kulcha Naan – is filled with cooked onions.
- Keema Naan – a flatbread with a filling of lamb mince, mutton, or goat meat.
- Roghani Naan – a type of bread popular in Pakistan sprinkled with sesame seeds.
- Peshawari and Kashmiri naans – are filled with nuts and raisins, including pistachios.
- Paneer Naan – stuffed with paneer filling flavoured with ground cilantro and paprika.
- Amritsari Naan – stuffed with mashed potatoes and spices, also known as ‘Aloo Naan,’ from Amritsar, India
The Indian Ocean restaurant set another significant record. They set a new Naan World Record by cooking 640 flatbreads in one hour. They outnumbered the Guinness Book of World Records’ target of 400. They were given to charity and were gratefully acknowledged by the Salvation Army Hostel in the United Kingdom.
A ‘Family Naan’, a large table-sized flatbread made for everyone to share with their dish, can be ordered in Birmingham’s Balti restaurants in the UK. Many ethnic bakeries are also introduced in the UK, cooking fresh ones for buyers at fantastic prices, such as four new made Naans for £1.
Today, the Naan is widely accessible in UK supermarkets and made in large quantities as an accompanist to a cuisine; chefs are constantly developing new variants of this initial Mogul flatbread, & people are also attempting to make it at home.
Have you had Naan yet dipped with the Indian-flavoured butter chicken or Dal Makhni? Are you eagerly looking for a place to give you Indian authenticity in this flatbread?
Enjoy the taste of India with us in Banjara restaurant, Virginia, UK.