Thursday, July 12, 2012

Indian Fry Bread

If you've never had Fry Bread, you are missing OUT. YUM. Growing up in New Mexico, I was blessed. Perhaps I didn't feel that way at the time, about the "Land of Entrapment", I mean Land of Enchantment ;), but the gorgeous skies, the mountains, Hatch green chilies, well, the food in general. One food I love is Fry Bread. I love Fry Bread, topped with taco fillings, or with honey on top. It's chewy, has pockets of air in it. You can serve it along side a Green chilie stew, and it soaks up the stew when dipped in. Top with cinnamon sugar, or powdered sugar for a sweet treat.
When I was in college in NM, every once in a while the Native American students would make Indian tacos to raise money for their club. They would be out in the open air concourse. Huge bowls of dough. A table lined up with fillings. It smelled so good. Believe me when I say that whatever lunch plans you had before, no matter who you were meeting, your plans changed when you saw them out there. There was a line, but who cares. I stood line, that line and the line for the Spiced Chai at a food cart on campus, but that's another post.
This bread is simple to make, I'm not sure my recipe is "authentic" but it tastes like it is. I use powdered milk, but if you don't have it, just leave it out, it's not a huge deal at all. I love that you don't have to knead dough or wait for it to rise. It's a quick and easy bread to make.
How many pieces of bread the recipe yields is really dependent on how big you shape your bread, but I would say 10-12 pieces. Another thing is, mine never turn out really round.

Give Peas A Chance Indian Fry Bread

Makes about 10-12  pieces of bread.
3-3/4 cups all purpose flour
2-1/2 teaspoon salt- I use kosher
5 teaspoons baking powder
4 teaspoons powdered milk
1- 2/3 cup hot tap water
Oil for frying
Extra flour for your hands- you'll need quite a bit!

Sift the dry ingredients together into a big bowl. Pour the water on top. Stir the ingredients with a fork until the dough comes together. It will pull from the sides of the bowl and be sticky. Do not over mix this! It won't look like a smooth ball. See the pictures below.
Heat the oil to 350 degrees in a deep, heavy bottom pot. I use my dutch oven. 
Flour your hands well, take some dough and pat it into a disk that is about 5 inches in diameter and about 1/4 inch thickness. Don't use a rolling pin, you want air bubbles, and areas that aren't uneven. Some parts of the disk will be thinner than others.
Place one piece of Fry Bread into the oil, once it floats to the top, gently press it down with tongs so the top gets cooked. Turn the bread over and cook until golden on each side, about 1-2 minutes on each side.
Remove from oil and place on a cookie sheet lined with paper towels.
Repeat with remaining dough.
Fry Bread can be kept warm in a low oven. Or reheated in an oven, if refrigerated.

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