Manakish kishik, zaatar and cheese
Manakish or mana’ish is a flat baked bread which is very popular in Lebanon. In our Lebanese cuisine manakish are usually eaten for breakfast. You can crave for it anytime especially the most favourable one for most people is the zaatar which is a blend of pounded dried thyme, oregano, summac and toasted sesame. You won’t believe how easy and joyful to prepare them. When I visited my son in Norway, I prepared a variety of delicious manakish for him which he found them amazing especially it wasn’t easy to find them there.
Manakish can be topped by our amazing Lebanese zaatar or a combination of halloumi cheese and mozzarella. Another topping is the mixture of kishik, onions and tomatoes in addition of the toasted sesame and walnut that gives kishik manakish a distinctive taste you won’t forget.
Prep.time: 1 hour and 15 mins
Cooking time: 30 to 35 mins
3 cups of flour (you can substitute one cup with whole wheat flour)
1 tsp salt
2 tsp sugar
2 tbsp oil
2 tsp yeast
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup hot water
1 tbsp dried thyme
1 tbsp dried oregano
2 tbsp ground summac
3 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp kishik
2 tbsp chopped onions
1 small tomato chopped
2 tbsp sesame seeds toasted
2 tbsp walnut crushed coarsly toasted
2 tbsp olive oil
1/3 cup water or more
To make cheese mankoushi mix the same amount of shredded halloum and mozzarella together
PREPARATION: In a large bowl combine the flour, salt, sugar and yeast then add the oil. Mix the milk and the water together before pouring it on top of the ingredients to make it warm for the yeast to rise. Knead for few mins or until you have a soft dough or you can even mix it in a processor. Divide the dough into 7 to 8 round shape balls placing them on a lightly oiled tray then cover them with a plastic wrap. Let them rest for 30 mins. Meanwhile you can prepare the kishik topping, mix all the ingredients together adding more water if needed until you have a mixture similar to yogurt. Mix the zaatar blend or the cheese or maybe a little bit from both if you desire.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Flatten each dough on a floured surface using a rolling pin into a circle its diameter around 18 cm. Press the edge of the flat dough with your fingers to make notches for the topping to stay in as shown in the images.
Place a heaped tbsp or a bit more of kishik or zaatar and spread it over the surface of the dough. it is preferable if you heat the tray before. Bake in the oven for 8 to 10 mins or until the bottom is dark golden. You might need to do three batches. You can even make small size flat bread by flatten a big ball dough and divide them with a 5 cm diameter round cup. Then spread on each one your choice of topping and bake the same way.
You can’t resist the taste of zaatar, kishik or even cheese mankoushe when its aroma flows all over your kitchen, it’s really worth the effort to make your own dough and manakish.