Green is go! These super nutritious green flatbreads are nearly as easy to make as plain ones. Use wild garlic and nettles in the early spring or spinach at other times of the year. Wrap them around your favourite fillings, dip them into something delicious or use them to mop up a curry.
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Why Make Your Own Flatbreads?
Because they’re incredibly easy to make and only require a few simple ingredients. Flour, water, oil and salt are all you need to make your own delicious flatbreads. You can control exactly what goes into them and bake them to your desired perfection. Plus it’s fun. Watch them puff up as you cook them.
What Greens To Use For Green Flatbreads?
If you have access to wild edible greens, there’s nothing quite like them, both for flavour and nutrition. This is especially true in the spring when our bodies are craving fresh tonic foods. Nettles, wild garlic, three cornered leeks all work well.
I like to use a mix of nettles and wild garlic as I think it makes the best flavour combination. Nettles on their own can be quite strong and the same is true of wild garlic. But together they’re not as pungent nor as overpoweringly mineral in taste.
However, wild greens aside, any soft green leaved vegetable will work well in these green flatbreads. Spinach is the obvious candidate, but Swiss chard, orach or fat hen are all good. And for those that grow their own, don’t forget the greens we often throw away such as turnip tops, beetroot leaves or carrot tops.
If you’re not quite sure what wild garlic, or ramsons as it’s also known, actually is, take a look at my wild garlic pesto post. It has a helpful section on wild garlic foraging.
How to Forage Nettles
The best time to forage for stinging nettles is in the early spring when they’ve recently emerged from the ground. The leaves are at their tenderest and tastiest too. Whilst older nettles and leaves can be tough, they also acquire a stronger metallic flavour which can be a bit off putting.
Woodland margins and hedgerows are the best places to look for nettles, but if you’re a gardener you may well have your own patch. If you’re on private land, do make sure you have the landowner’s permission.
For most purposes, it’s best to take only the nettle tips when foraging as these are the tenderest. I usually take the top four to six leaves. Unless you’re happy to grasp the nettle firmly and pick them with your bare hands in CT fashion, it’s best to wear rubber gloves or snip them into a basket with a pair of scissors.
Whilst it’s best to handle raw nettles with gloves, the sting completely disappears once they’re cooked.
Green flatbreads may seem a little odd at first glance. But what a clever way to eat your greens. The carbohydrate, vitamin and mineral elements are covered. All you need to add is protein and flavour. They’re vegan too.
The recipe I’ve given at the bottom of the post is for six medium sized flatbreads. You can easily double the recipe though. Or, if you think it’s too many, don’t be put off, these green flatbreads freeze really well. Alternatively, keep them in a plastic bag so they don’t dry out, and they’ll be good for a couple of days without freezing.
Blitz Your Greens
First off, you need to prepare your greens. In this instance I’ve used a mix of nettles and wild garlic. Wash them well then place in a colander to drain. Give them a good shake, then blitz in a blender with water.
A power blender is best for this as it produces a smooth green purée, but any blender will work. You just might have a less intense green and bits of leaf in your flatbreads. I use my Froothie Evolve* which blitzes pretty much anything to smithereens.
Once you have a nice green liquid, add flour, salt and olive oil and mix until you have a beautiful green dough. You may need to add a little extra water if the dough is too dry. But go carefully, a teaspoon at a time, as it will be difficult to handle if too wet.
After many experiments with different flour combinations, I now mostly use a mixture of half wholemeal flour and half plain to make flatbreads. I find this gives a nice springy texture but still satisfies my desire for bran in my bread.
Roll The Dough
Although you can use the dough straight away, it’s best if you leave it to rest for fifteen minutes or so before rolling out. This allows the gluten to develop so the dough not only holds together better, but has a better texture too.
Once rested, divide the dough into six. Form into balls with your hands then roll out as thinly as you can.
It really depends how sticky your dough is as to whether you need to flour your work surface or oil it. This time around my dough was quite sticky so I used flour. But when I get it just right, oil is brilliant. I lightly oil my rolling surface and rolling pin and no flour is required.
Baking Green Flatbreads
Before you start rolling, place a large non-stick frying pan over a medium high heat. Lightly oil it if necessary. I use a cast iron skillet*, which is ideal for baking flatbreads and I don’t need any additional oil.
As soon as you’ve rolled one of the dough balls out, place it in the heated pan, whilst you roll the next one. Bake it for a minute or until it’s puffed up and there are a few brown spot on the underside. Then turn the bread over and do the same for the other side. Repeat the process until all the flatbreads are baked, rolling one, whilst another is cooking.
Meanwhile, place the cooked flatbread onto a plate or lined basket and cover it with a tea towel. Flatbreads can dry out quite quickly, so it’s best to keep them covered. Stack them up on top of each other as they bake. This will also help to keep them both warm and soft.
If you’re not eating them straight away, stack them up and cover as above, so the steam isn’t lost. Place in a sealable plastic bag as soon as they’re no longer hot.
They are, of course, at their best whilst still warm. So if you can make them just as you’re about to eat, so much the better.
How to Eat Green Flatbreads
You can use these green flatbreads pretty much as you do any other flatbread. They’re vegan so suitable for anyone who isn’t gluten intolerant. They’re at their very best when freshly cooked and still warm, but they’re still delicious when cold.
They work well as a wrap. Just stuff them with your favourite filling, although you probably don’t need any more green. They make a great accompaniment to curries and are perfect for scooping up hummus and many other dips. Or you can make delicious quesadillas. So many possibilities.
How about a green pizza? You can use the dough as a pizza base. Don’t cook it on the stove top. Just roll out the dough, cover it with your desired toppings, then bake in a hot oven as you would a normal pizza.
Green Egg Roll
One of my favourite ways of eating these green flatbreads is to roll it up with an egg. I make a thin one egg omelette, lay this over the bread, then spread a little tomato chilli sauce or chutney over the top. Then I just roll it up as tightly as I can, cut it in half and tuck in.
It’s delicious and the green, yellow and red make a lovely and appetising contrast. Never mind green eggs and ham, green eggs and chilli is the way to go.
Other Recipes Using Foraged Greens You Might Like
- Fat hen & chickweed pesto
- Nettle cakes with lemon
- Nettle soup
- Samphire noodles with miso marinated tofu
- Spanakopita: wild greens & feta filo parcels
- Wild garlic pesto: two ways
Keep in Touch
Thanks for visiting Tin and Thyme. If you make these green flatbreads, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below. And do please rate the recipe. Have you any top tips? Do share photos on social media too and use the hashtag #tinandthyme, so I can spot them.
If you’d like more bread recipes, follow the link and you’ll find I have quite a lot of them. All delicious, of course.
Green Flatbreads. PIN IT.
Green Flatbreads – The Recipe
- 50 g nettles
- 25 g wild garlic
- 130 g water
- 150 g wholemeal flour
- 150 g plain flour
- ½ tsp sea salt
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- Wash the nettles and garlic then place in a colander to drain.
- Give them a good shake, then place into a blender. A power blender is best for this as it produces a smooth green purée, but any blender will work. You just might have a less intense green and bits of leaf in your flatbreads.
- Add the water and blitz until you get as fine a purée as you can.
- Place the flour and salt into a large bowl and whisk so that everything is well mixed. Make a well in the middle then add the olive oil and green purée, making sure you scrape out as much as possible.
- Stir with a flat bladed knife from the inside out until it comes together as dough. If the dough is dry, add a little extra water, but go carefully, a teaspoon at a time, as it will be difficult to handle if too wet.
- Knead briefly in the bowl with your hands and form the dough into a ball. Cover with a tea towel or plastic bag and leave to rest for fifteen minutes.
- Meanwhile place a large non-stick frying pan over a medium high heat. Oil it if necessary. I use a cast iron pan, which is ideal for baking flatbreads.
- Divide the dough into six, more or less equal sized, pieces and form into balls.
- Roll each one out on a floured surface into as thin a round as you can.
- As soon as you’ve rolled one, place it in the heated pan, whilst you roll the next one.
- Bake for a minute, then turn the bread over and do the same for the other side.
- Cover the bread to keep it warm, if eating straight away. I line a basket with a clean tea towel, place the bread in that and wrap the tea towel over the top.
- Repeat the process until all the flatbreads are baked, rolling one, whilst another is cooking.
I’m sharing this recipe for green flatbreads with The Rare Welsh Bit for #CookBlogShare.
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