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Beet Flatbread

Beet Flatbreads and Pomegranate Raita

Renée Robinson

These Will Brighten Up a Meal. That’s For Sure.

Get a load of these flatbreads. I decided I wanted to make flatbreads with beet juice. First and foremost, I love beets and thought their flavor would be great, but I was also very curious as to how the color would translate. Well, as you can see, the color is bright and beautiful.

I wanted to make certain the beet flavor would be discernible in the bread and after carefully tasting the beet juice, I decided that pink peppercorns are a perfect enhancement. I actually made these twice. The first time I added 1 1/2 teaspoons of finely ground pink peppercorns *. The second time I used a full 2 teaspoons and that did the trick. I also added sumac * to keep the flavor bright and make sure it didn’t fall flat. The same routine held true. The first time I added 1 teaspoon. The second time I doubled it and it was spot on.

I went with a little Greek yogurt and olive oil in the dough. I whisked it into the beet juice, along with the pink peppercorns and sumac, and was good to go.

Beet Juice
Beet juice, yogurt, olive oil, ground pink peppercorns and sumac

While the dough was rising, I got to work on my raita. I wanted to serve it with the flatbreads because I knew they’d be great for scooping up the creamy yogurt. I first grated a carrot and stirred it into the yogurt. I really like the texture a finely grated carrot gives to raita. It adds body. For flavor, I added ground dried black lime *, nigella seeds *, chipotle chili flakes *, salt, and olive oil. I then bloomed cumin seeds in hot olive oil and stirred those into the yogurt. I’ve left it as an option, but I added 1/8 teaspoon hing/asafoetida * and really liked the depth of flavor it added to the raita. I then seeded a pomegranate, chopped a little fresh mint and stirred them into the chilled raita right before I served it.

Now, getting back to the flatbreads: after about 80 minutes the dough had doubled in bulk.

Risen Beet Dough
Dough after rising for 80 minutes

I divided the dough into 8 equal pieces, shaped them into balls and got on with rolling them out into 8 inch circles. I like using a 12 inch dowel * for rolling out small pieces of dough. I think it’s much easier than using a normal size rolling pin. It’s an inexpensive tool and comes in handy whenever I have small pieces of dough to work with.

Rolled Flatbread Dough
One circle of rolled out dough

Milk Street has a technique I like in which they stack each rolled out ball of dough between sheets of parchment. It makes it easy to place the raw dough in the skillet and then simply peel off the piece of parchment. This way, the shape doesn’t go all wonky like it can when you plop a piece of rolled out dough into the skillet. It only took one minute of cooking for each side of the flatbreads in order for them to puff up and brown. I then brushed them with a little olive oil, sprinkled them with parsley and served them up. 

Friends, these are absolutely delicious. The beet flavor is there, but it’s not all powerful. They’re simply more interesting than normal flatbreads. And the raita was the perfect accompaniment. The pop of tart/sweet pomegranate arils was delightful. These were great with roast chicken and I also think they’d  be outstanding served with lamb chops or lamb kebabs. And seeing as I have some of the flatbreads stashed in my freezer, I plan on trying out that combo soon. 

Here’s a little note about beet juice. I buy Biotta brand because It’s the only brand I’ve found that is 100% beet juice. The ones that also contain lemon juice don’t have the full rich flavor of pure beets. I’m sure there must be other brands available that are pure beet juice, but this is the only one I can get locally. 

 

*Disclosure: I only recommend products I use myself and all opinions expressed here are my own. This post may contain affiliate links that, at no additional cost to you, may pay me a small commission and help support the costs of this website. Read full privacy policy here.

Beet Flatbreads and Pomegranate Raita

Recipe by Renée Robinson
Servings

8

servings

Fluffy and tender yeasted flatbreads are flavored with beet juice, pink peppercorns, and sumac. I served them with a carrot and pomegranate aril raita in which I added cumin seeds bloomed in olive oil, dried black lime, nigella seeds and chipotle flakes. So delicious!

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Ingredients

  • Beet Flatbreads
  • 1 cup 1 beet juice

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 Greek whole milk plain yogurt

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 extra virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing on the cooked flatbreads

  • 2 teaspoons 2 finely ground pink peppercorns *

  • 2 teaspoons 2 sumac *

  • 375 g 375 - 2 3/4 cups, plus 2 tablespoons unbleached all purpose flour (such as Gold Medal)

  • 85 g 85 - 1/2 cup semolina flour

  • 1 tablespoon 1 instant yeast

  • 1 teaspoon 1 granulated sugar

  • 3/4 teaspoon 3/4 table salt

  • 2 tablespoons 2 chopped Italian parsley

  • Pomegranate Raita
  • 1 1/2 cups 1 1/2 Greek whole milk plain yogurt

  • 1 large 1 grated carrot

  • 1 1 dried black lime *, finely ground

  • 1 tablespoon 1 nigella seeds *

  • 1 teaspoon 1 chipotle chile flakes *

  • 3/4 teaspoon 3/4 fine sea salt

  • 1/8 teaspoon 1/8 hing/asafoetida *, optional

  • 4 1/2 tablespoons 4 1/2 extra virgin olive oil, divided

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons 1 1/2 cumin seeds

  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup 1/2 - 3/4 pomegranate arils

  • 2 tablespoons 2 chopped fresh mint

Directions

  • Beet Flatbreads
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the beet juice, yogurt, olive oil, pink peppercorns, and sumac. In a stand mixer (with dough hook)or bread dough machine, combine the flour, semolina, instant yeast, sugar, and salt. On medium low speed, slowly add the beet juice mixture. Keep mixing until the juice is fully incorporated and the dough has come together and is pulling away from the sides of the bowl, about 5 minutes. It will still be sticking to the bottom of the bowl.
  • Oil a large bowl, add the dough, cover, and let rise for 60 - 90 minutes, or until the dough has doubled in bulk.
  • Cut 8 pieces of parchment paper into 9 inch squares or do as I do and use pre-cut 9 inch rounds of parchment paper that I purchase in bulk.
  • Gently deflate the dough and turn it out onto a lightly oiled counter. Divide into 8 equal pieces, approximately 106 grams each. Shape into taut balls and cover with plastic while rolling out each ball.
  • Roll each ball into an 8 inch circle and place each one on one of the pieces parchment paper, stacking them as you go.
  • Heat a large (12 inch) cast iron skillet over medium heat until it is good and hot. Place one flatbread into the skillet, paper side up. Peel off the parchment paper and cook for 1 minute. Flip the flatbread and cook for an additional minute. Remove to a cooling rack and continue cooking the rest of the flatbreads. Let the flatbreads cool, brush with olive oil and sprinkle on the chopped parsley. Serve with the Pomegranate Raita and Enjoy!
  • Pomegranate Raita
  • In a medium size bowl, stir together the yogurt, carrot, black lime, nigella seeds, salt, hing, and 3 tablespoons olive oil.
  • In a small pot or skillet, heat the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the cumin seeds and cook for about a minute, until the seeds become fragrant and are toasted. Stir the oil and seeds into the raita. Cover and refrigerate for at least a half hour.
  • Stir in the pomegranate arils and chopped mint, and serve it up with the flatbreads.

Equipment

  • 12 inch Cast Iron Skillet

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