Monday, March 29, 2010

Lagana - Greek Flatbread for Lent

Lagana is a flatbread traditionally made during the lenten season or especially during Clean Monday or Kathera Defthera in Greek, the first day of Lent. The dough is similar to Focaccia and is topped with sesame seeds.I adapted the lagana recipe from Kalofagas to make my own lagana.I divided the original recipe by four and still divided the dough to obtain two laganas.


Ingredients:
All Purpose Flour: 1.5 cups +2 tbsp
Instant Yeast: 1.5 tsp
Coarse Sea Salt: 1 and 1/8 tsp
Sugar: 1/4 tsp

Room temperature Water: 3/4 cup +

Sesame seeds

Preparation:
In a big bowl,mix the dry ingredients of flour,yeast,salt and sugar.Add in water and with a ladle stir together the dry items to form a sticky mass.If dough the looks dry then add water one table spoon at a time. Cover the bowl with a lid leaving it little ajar for the gases to escape.Let it rest in a warm spot for 3-4 hours minimum.

Here you can see that there is no kneading of the dough.The original recipe uses the Artisan Bread in 5 minutes idea to make the laganes.The mixing of flour and other dry items with water and forming a sticky mass takes maximum of 5 minutes only.

Once the dough is doubled or risen ,flour hands and gently deflate the dough and put it in a parchement lined baking sheet.Shape it into a lagane - rounded rectangle - by pulling and stretching and adding flour as needed.Here again I went for a medium size lagane.I divided the dough into two and froze one part for later use and the other I shaped into a lagane.

Let it rise again for 45-60 minutes.About 15 minutes prior to baking,poke down the lagane with your finger tips to make indents and sprinkle sesame seeds.Preheat the oven at 375F.

Bake for about 30-35 minutes till the top is lightly browned and then let it cool in a cooling rack.

I do not know how the original lagane tastes like though I got a crusty chewy bread perfect for stews and soups..It is said that lagana is the finest of Greek Breads.Ofcourse the picture does not look like that.The bread look a bit dry and I suppose I should have added more water -atleast 2-3 tbsp.Well,considering my skills I would say my lagana came out perfect and goes straight to AWED:Greece hosted by yourstruly,an event by DK.

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