I first learned about Einkorn flour as being a non-glutinous flour in Wheat Belly – Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight and Find your Path Back to Health, by William Davis, MD, (see blog post on Wheat Belly), I was intrigued to see what “original” wheat – the wheat of our grandparents – was like. And since I eat gluten-free most of the time, I wanted something that I can put tuna or egg salad on, or to coat chicken before pan sautéing, that wasn’t gluten or contained sugar. So I found the Einkorn flour and started to play around with making my own flatbreads. These flatbreads are so easy to make and the dough freezes really well that I often make a big batch and divide it into four balls and freeze 2-3 of them for fresh flatbreads each week.
Einkorn flour is not the easiest to find. I was able to find it at some Whole Foods markets and organic markets, under the Jovial brand, and it is available on Amazon. It’s pricier than regular flour, because it’s not mass-produced. The Einkorn flour is not as elastic as regular flour so I add more yeast and time for the dough to rise really high to help the dough expand. This makes the flatbreads not as dense and the dough goes further. I also make them pretty small in size – about 3-4 inches in diameter — and I flatten them out with the heel of my hand. I do not add any sugar or sweetener to my dough. I flavor it with salt and olive oil and sometimes add a mix of seeds on top – typically a blend of sesame, cumin and poppy seeds. I wrap them in the parchment paper that I bake them in overnight so they still crispy and then transfer to a plastic air-tight bag.
Einkorn Flour Flatbreads
4 cups Einkorn flour
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon of olive oil (I use extra virgin)
2 packets Yeast
1½ cups of warm water
3-4 tablespoons of seeds – sesame, poppy, cumin, caraway (optional)
Makes about 40 small flatbreads.
To make the dough:
In a bowl I proof two packets of yeast with 1½ cups of warm water. In my standing mixer with the dough blade attached I add 4 cups of Einkorn flour, 1 tablespoon of Kosher salt and then the yeast-water mixture, and ¼ cup of olive oil and beat on a slow speed until combined. If you do not have a standing mixer, you can add all the ingredients into a bowl and mix by hand and then move to a floured wooden cutting board and kneed by hand for a few minutes. I have made it this way and it works great. Grease a bowl with the remaining 1tablespoon of olive oil and add the dough to the bowl and turn it so the oil covers. Cover the bowl with a damp kitchen towel and leave it alone for 4 hours. Punch down the dough and divide into 4 balls. At this point you can freeze them separately wrapped in plastic wrap and then in a freezer-proof bag.
To make the flatbreads:
Preheat the oven to 400. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Work with each ball separately. Flour a surface (I use a wooden cutting board) with the Einkorn flour and pull a piece of dough about 1 to 2 inches at a time and roll it into a ball (little less than golf ball size or bigger if you prefer), and repeat. You will get about 10 balls per quarter of dough, give or take. On the floured surface, take one of the balls and with the heel of your hand spread out the dough from the center out. Use the added flour if the dough is too sticky. Transfer the flattened dough to the cookie sheet. I get 5 on a large sheet. Sprinkle the flatbreads with seeds if you are using, or a little salt if you like. And bake for 10-12 minutes, until the edges are a bit brown. Cool on the sheets for 5 minutes and remove them to a plate to continue to cool. Repeat with the rest of the dough if you are making them all.