Chef Christine Moss shares a recipe for M’smen, a traditional flatbread from North Africa — and the first thing she tasted when she arrived in Tangier
[Adapted (veganized) from The Spruce Eats]
Makes 16 breads
Note: When wrapped up, they can last up to five days in the refrigerator. I popped one in the toaster to reheat and it reminded me of a ‘toaster strudel’.
For the dough:
- 3-1/2 cups flour
- ½ cup semolina
- 2 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp salt (reduced because vegan butter is salty)
- ¼ tsp yeast
- 1 ½ cups warm water
For Folding and cooking:
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- ½ cup semolina
- ¼ cup softened vegan butter (I used Earth Balance soy free)
- Parchment paper cut into (32) 4” squares
Directions for dough:
1. Whisk together all of the dry ingredients: flour, semolina, sugar, salt and yeast.
2. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and slowly add the warm water, using clean hands mix it together as you add it in.
3. Using your hands knead the dough for six to seven minutes. If it is sticky, add a little more flour.
4. Coat the dough with a little oil and cover with a clean dry towel. Let it rest for 20 minutes.
5. Assemble your ingredients for folding and cooking.
6. Use a little of the oil to grease your work surface and your hands. A baking sheet works well for this.
7. With greased hands, divide the dough in half. Then divide each half again and again until you have 16 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ball and cover again with a towel and let rest for 10 minutes.
Directions for folding and cooking:
8. Take one ball of dough and stretch it out into a very thin circle, almost see through without any holes.
9. Place it down on the work surface, it can be stretched out this way as well. Dot the surface with the vegan butter and then sprinkle with a little semolina.
10. Fold the top edge down halfway. Fold the bottom edge up and over the top edge.
11. Fold the left side in towards the center and then the right side towards the center until you have a little square packet.
12. Place between two pieces of parchment paper and gently press it flat.
13. Repeat with the remaining 15 balls of dough.
14. Preheat a griddle or cast iron pan and lightly grease it with some of the oil.
15. Remove the parchment paper and fry on each side about 5-6 minutes until golden and slightly puffy.
16. Test for doneness, it should be flaky and chewy, but not undercooked.
Serve with vegan butter, maple syrup, jam or with a hearty bean soup.
You may also enjoy other vegan recipes on Chef Christine Moss’ author page.