Learn about different flatbreads to find in Australia
This one goes out to the carb lovers. You’ve probably eaten pita or tortillas before, but you can find other flatbreads from all over the world right here in Australia. Pretty much every culture has its own delicious chewy or flaky version and what a blessing that many of them can be found within a few hundred metres of each other in the richly diverse suburbs of Australia’s big cities.
Read on to learn more about flatbreads and let’s celebrate diversity in Australia in the most delicious way possible!
Also known as baqarkhani or bakar khani roti, this thick, spiced flatbread comes from Bangladesh.
They say this biscuity bread is named after the general Agha Baker Khan and it comes with an amazing origin story that includes love, battles and fighting a tiger.
Eat it with kebabs, or stuffed with cheese or fruit conserve.
Australia’s Bangladeshi community has been growing since the 1970s. Today, the largest number of Bangladesh-born migrants can be found in New South Wales. So if you’re searching for bakarkhani, Sydney’s western suburbs are definitely the best place to start.
This flatbread has many names and goes way, way back.
Under the name ruqaq it features in the earliest known Arabic cookbook, The Book of Dishes, published in the 10th century.
Today, it’s eaten with soups and stews or filled with chicken or lamb shawarma, salad and wrapped for lunch on the go or a midnight snack
Markook bread comes from the Levant and the Arabian Peninsula. People from the diverse countries across the region have contributed to making Australia the place it is today by sharing countless tasty dishes, and quite a number of tasty flatbreads.
Sangak or nân-e sangak is a whole wheat leavened flatbread baked on a bed of small river stones and it’s the national bread of Iran
This flatbread also has a long history dating back to the 11th century. Soldiers in the Persian army would carry pebbles and combine them at camp to make a sangak oven to feed the army, who ate it with lamb kabab. Arguably, ten centuries later, a thin, chewy piece of sangak is still the best bread to eat with kebab. It won’t go soggy and it definitely won’t let your taste buds down.
Persian cooking is known for its distinct flavour thanks to sour citrus fruits, pomegranate and the use of lots and lots of herbs, known as sabzi (in Farsi, the local language) Why not taste it for yourself by visiting a local restaurant or looking up a recipe? If you’re looking for a place to start, this kuku sabzi recipe is a truly delicious way to get your green intake up!
Injera is not just a flatbread, it’s also an eating utensil and a plate!
A sour fermented flatbread with a spongy texture, injera is a staple in Ethiopia, Eritrea, and some parts of Sudan. Given that it’s made from teff, an ancient grain, it’s also gluten free and the perfect flatbread for a celiac or anyone with a gluten sensitivity.
Traditionally, injera is used for serving and eating dishes like kik wat, an Ethiopian red lentil stew, or tibs, a kind of hybrid stir fry stew, usually made with goat and flavoured with a wildly delicious berbere spice mix.
You’ll easily find these dishes and more in Victoria, where Australia’s Ethiopian-born community is the largest but it can also be found in most other capital cities Let us know how you go.
Introducing gözleme: a savoury stuffed flatbread from Turkey.
Gözleme fillings vary but often include halal meats like lamb or beef, vegetables like spinach, onion and potato, and various cheeses.
Turkish migration to Australia can be traced as far back as the 1860s! Today, the Turkish community shares its cuisine and culture in places like Melbourne and Sydney. Whether Auburn, in Sydney’s west is the gözleme capital of Australia is up for discussion, but if you go there, make sure you have some chewy Turkish ice-cream post gözleme. What a treat.
In the Middle Atlas mountain range in Morocco, people eat a semolina bread called Harcha.
It has a crumbly texture and is enjoyed a number of ways: covered in honey and butter and served with mint tea, prepared like a sandwich stuffed with cheese or meat and also as a bed for stew.
Moroccan cuisine features delectable spices like ground coriander and cayenne that are available in grocers and supermarkets around Australia, and likes to mix sweet dried fruits like apricots and prunes, with meats and savoury dishes, for a unique taste that’s sure to impress.
Roti originates from the Indian subcontinent, but thanks to Indian migration across the world, is popular in many countries including here in Australia.
In Indonesia and Malaysia, roti canai is dished up with dal and other curries but can also be eaten as a sweet that is particularly delicious alongside an iced milo.
In Trinidad and Tobago, rich and buttery paratha roti accompanies curries, stews and egg dishes with a cup of tea. In Trinidad, they go by the name “buss-up shut” because the flaky flatbread resembles a “busted-up shirt”.
This list is just a taste of what’s out there. With hundreds of different cultures in Australia there is almost no end to the carby goodness you can try. Why not take a friend and head out on a carb trip of a life time this weekend?
Tell us which flatbread you like the most and why.