Sweet Potato Naan (Vegan, Whole grain)

November 15, 2015

If you have picky kids or partners who hate vegetables, make this bread. Everyone loves bread. They don't need to know you hid those dreaded healthy sweet potatoes inside it. This is also a good introduction to whole grain breads, and to baking bread in general. Fried dough is always tasty, so even if you or someone in your family doesn't like whole grains, there's a good chance this will go over well. It's also a single rise time and you don't need to proof the yeast, so it comes together quickly and easily. I'll often make this on a weeknight as it only takes about an hour from start to finish. You can make a curry during the rising time, and then when the curry's done, quickly fry up the bread and serve everything. It works out perfectly and you get awesome, homemade comfort food out of it.

So why sweet potato in bread? I was craving bread the whole time at yoga training, because we never got any. I ended up buying a loaf and storing it in our room because I got pretty desperate about halfway through. I've made almost a dozen different kinds of bread since coming home. I love bread. When I got really sick at the end of high school a doctor said it might be gluten intolerance, so I went without for a couple months, and it was the worst. No bread, no pasta. There wasn't as much gluten-free stuff then. It ended up not being related, which was pretty awesome, because a life without wheat would be a grouchy one. Anyway. I wrote last week about how I got a lot of recipe ideas during meditation time, and this is another one. Sweet potatoes + fried bread = double comfort food. Yes, please.

When I say fried, I don't mean deep fried. You cook it sort of like a pancake. A little oil goes a long way, and the texture is a kajillion times better than baking it. I've tested this recipe with all spelt, all kamut, and a combination of the two, and it worked out every time. I imagine a blend of whole wheat and white would be good as well, but I probably wouldn't do 100% whole wheat, as it tends to be a little hard.

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Makes about 8 standard sized naan breads


3 cups whole spelt or kamut flour
2 teaspoons dry yeast
1 teaspoon coconut sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup roasted sweet potato, mashed
1/3 cup warm non-dairy milk
3 tablespoons oil (I used grape seed)

In a large bowl, combine the flour, yeast, coconut sugar, and salt. Mix the milk and oil in with the sweet potato, then add that to the dry ingredients.

If you're using a stand mixer, start out with the dough hook and don't bother with the paddle. It comes together quickly. Knead with the hook for about ten minutes, or until it's quite smooth and soft.

If you're kneading it by hand, mix everything together with a wooden spoon first. Turn the mixed dough onto a floured countertop and knead for a little under ten minutes, or until it's smooth and soft.

Place the dough in a large greased bowl, cover it with a tea towel, and let it rise in a warm place for about 45 minutes, or until doubled in size.

Heat a large, flat pan over medium heat with a teaspoon of oil. Separate the dough into 8 equal balls and flour a spot on the counter. Roll out each piece very thinly with a rolling pin. The dough isn't too sticky, but if you find it difficult to roll, add more flour.

As soon as you roll out a piece, fry it in the hot pan. It will puff up immediately. Cook for about 30 seconds a side. I recommend adding a little more oil to the pan when you flip it to the other side to get equal browning. Roll out another piece as one is cooking if you can, and you'll get done really quickly.

They're best warm, but pretty good cold too. Graham likes to use leftovers for little pizzas.

If you have any questions about this or making bread at home in general, please leave a comment below!

2 comments on "Sweet Potato Naan (Vegan, Whole grain)"
  1. I made pumpkin naan bread not to long ago, but sweet potato version sounds even better!

  2. Thanks! I have made this version with pumpkin, but preferred the sweet potato. It's easier to find year round, too.