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Al Harb makes three different types of delicious breads. (05/07/14)

Zaatar Bread

Makes 8 (7 to 8-inch flatbreads)

Flatbread:

1 cup lukewarm water

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1 (1/4-ounce package) active dry yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)

3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting

1 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more for greasing

Zaatar topping*

1/4 cup ground sumac

3 tablespoons dried thyme

3 tablespoons dried oregano

2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds

1 teaspoon coarse salt

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Combine the water, sugar, and yeast, and let it stand for about 10 minutes until foamy.

Meanwhile, combine the flour and salt in a large bowl. Add the olive oil and work it in with your fingers. Make a well in the center, add the yeast and water mixture, and stir to form a soft dough.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes until smooth and elastic. Form it into a ball and place it in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth or plastic wrap and leave the dough to rise in a warm, draft-free place for about 1 hour until it doubles in size.

Preheat oven to 400°F. Place a baking stone or baking sheet in the oven as it heats.

Knead the dough briefly and divide it into 8 balls. Place the balls on a lightly oiled baking sheet, cover with a damp cloth or plastic wrap, and let stand for about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine the zaatar topping ingredients in a small bowl.

On a lightly floured surface, flatten each ball of dough and roll it into a circle 1/8-inch thick and about 7-8 inches in diameter.

Press each circle with your fingertips to make little indentations for the topping to rest in. Spread 1 heaping tablespoon of zaatar topping over each round, leaving a 1/2-inch border around the edges.

Bake until lightly browned and crisp, about 8 minutes. Depending on the size of your oven and baking stone or baking sheet(s), you may need to do several batches. Serve warm right away or else cool on racks.

Cheese Bread

1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour 1 cup shredded Mozzarella Cheese

2 ½ teaspoons baking powder 1 egg, beaten

¼ cup sugar ¾ cup milk

¾ teaspoon salt 1/3 cup olive oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan.

In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking powder & salt. In another large bowl, beat together egg, milk and oil. Stir the flour mixture into the egg mixture, stirring until just moistened. Pour batter into prepared pan. Spread cheese over the top.

Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of loaf comes out clean.

Sweet & Cheesy Waffles

Pour syrup over pre-made waffle, then spread with mozzarella cheese to taste. Add a dash of cinnamon. Bake at 500 degrees until golden brown.

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