Fried Bread Laced with Coconut, Chilies, and Shallots is a Very Good Thing.
I love all kinds of flatbreads and have made many different versions. This time around I wanted one made with dried unsweetened coconut, green chiles and shallots. And I wanted it to be a fairly puffy, so I knew I needed to use yeast. Not finding a recipe for it, I came up with my own.
I used both yogurt and coconut milk for this. I like what a little yogurt does for the texture of flatbreads, and I wanted to reinforce the coconut flavor.
I was able to get my hands on some really nice green finger chilies and used plenty of them – a heaping cup of finely sliced chilies.
I had no idea how the dried coconut was going to work here. I knew it would soak up some liquid, but didn’t have a clue as to how much liquid would actually be needed. I just had to wing it and hope for the best.
After mixing everything up in my stand mixer, I let it rise and could tell it was going to work. The dough was very easy to work with. I gathered it into 8 balls, rolled them out and stacked them on lightly floured squares of parchment.
I cooked the first one in a dry skillet, but wasn’t terribly thrilled with the result. Because of all the added ingredients, the crust wasn’t crisping up well. That’s when I decided to turn these into fried flatbreads. I heated up some vegetable oil in the skillet and gave one a try.
Oh, man, these were even better than I’d imagined. That was it. Fried flatbreads it was and what a beautiful texture they turned out to be. All crispy goodness on the outside and nicely puffed, soft and chewy on the inside. We ate these along with a coconut milk fish curry and I could not have enjoyed them more.
I made these to go with Milk Street’s potato and tomato curry. The flatbreads are delicious, flavorful, and substantive, with the coconut providing heft and the green chilis adding a trace of heat. I used only a bit of oil for frying and would probably cut it next time altogether. I let these rise overnight in my refrigerator, which may have toned down the moisture a bit. Would make again!
I’m so happy you enjoyed these, Lauren! I really loved them, too. I like the idea of allowing them to rise overnight. Thank you!