How To Make Flatbread

It's easy to pick up pre-made flatbread at the supermarket, but discovering how to make flatbread is a skill that you'll want to pull out every once in awhile for a warm, super-fresh treat. Flatbread has various names, depending on the culture: pita in Greece, blintz in Ukraine, lavash in the Middle East, focaccia in Italy and so on. This recipe spotlights lefse, a soft, Norwegian variety similar to a tortilla. Lefse can be savory--often served with fish in Scandinavia--but, in this case, it is sweet. After the lefse is grilled, it is brushed with butter and then sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar. It's perfect for dessert or a sweet snack. Compared to other breads, flatbread is relatively quick to make since it doesn't need to rise. Simply combine the ingredients for the dough, roll it out, then turn it out onto a griddle. When cooking, make sure the heat isn't too high; if the outside darkens too quickly, the inside of the bread might not get cooked. Store lefse in an airtight container for up to 1 week in the refrigerator, or freeze up to 3 months.
-Hey everybody, it's Chef Lovely, and today we're gonna make a delicious bread. It's is called Lefse. So let's get those ingredients: 2 cup of all purpose flour; 2 tablespoons of sugar or sugar substitute equivalent to 2 tablespoons of sugar; 1/8 teaspoon of salt; 1/2 cup of fat free milk; 1/4 cup of water; 3 tablespoons shortening or canola oil; 2 tablespoons of butter that has been melted; 3 tablespoons of sugar; and 1/4 teaspoon of ground cinnamon. Okay, in a saucepan here, we're gonna get this hot, and we're gonna add our milk, our shortening, and our water. Now, we're gonna heat this just until it's warm, so between 105 and 115 degrees. So, we're not looking to boil or anything like that. We just wanna make it nice warm, and we're gonna add in our last ingredient, our shortening here. Okay, so let's just give this a stir, so then our shortening melts right down into our milk and out water, and I'm gonna keep a very close eye on this because as you know milk that boils over is really tough to clean. It's also unsafe, okay. So, keep an eye on this. I'm gonna come over here. I'm gonna take my flour right here in this bowl, and then here we have some of our salt and our sugar, 2 tablespoons of sugar there, and I'm just gonna take my hands and just give this a mix just like that, and look at my pan just that quickly you can see that it's simmering, small bubbles, we're gonna turn that off. It's exactly where I need it to be. Okay, so let's take this. We're gonna pour it right on top of our flour mixture here just like that. Okay, and with my wooden spoon here just gonna give this a mix until it comes together to form a ball of dough. So, here we go. I have a little bit of extra flour here on the side. That's the chef lovely tip. Therefore, I'm gonna use this. We're gonna put a little bit on my cutting board, and I wanna bring this dough together, and then we're gonna let it sit covered, and I'm gonna show you how we're gonna form each piece of bread here. So, let's go ahead and damp this ball out just like this. I'm gonna put a little bit of flour on my hand just to prevent any sticking and I'm just gonna bring it together and as you see, it formed a nice ball of dough just like that. Okay, great, so like I said, we wanna keep this nice and warm. So, we're gonna add this back to the bowl just like this. We're gonna cover it with a towel. I'm gonna clean a little bit and when we come back, I'm gonna show you how we're gonna roll out this dough and cook our bread. Okay, so our dough has rested a little bit. I kept it covered with my towel. Now, I'm gonna show you how we're gonna roll out this dough. So, you wanna take about 3 tablespoons worth of your dough just like this, and we're gonna flour surface here with a little bit of flour, and we're also going to flour rolling pin that we're gonna use. This is just to make that nothing sticks and it comes off nice and clean. Okay, so we're gonna just give this a roll and take your time, pick it up flip it, roll it a little bit more. This way, you are ensuring that nothing is gonna stick, okay? It's gonna be much easier for you this way. So, pick ti up, give it a toss, same thing here, and we're gonna do a couple more times. It's really nice and thin. This is gonna cook very quickly in our skillet that we have here. So, we don't want it too thick. Okay, looks good, I wanna flip it over, give it a few more pushes of the rolling pin here, and I'm actually gonna go ahead and get my saute pan here hot, but a medium heat, okay, no oil needs to go in here. This is completely un-greased situation. So, no oil, no fat, no palm, anything like that. So, we want it nice and dry. So, I'm gonna go ahead and roll it just a little bit more, and as you can see, it's nice and thin and absolutely gorgeous. So, let's go, few more times pass of the rolling pin, and we are good to go. Now, this is a time where you really wanna use some finesse, okay. So, we're just gonna slowly pick this up here. If you need some help getting it into the pan if you don't wanna go in with just using your hands, you can also use a spatula to kind of help you with this. So, we're gonna slowly just kind of add it right into our pan, and we're gonna touch it. We're gonna leave it alone, okay. It's only gonna cook for about 2 minutes on this side. We're looking forward to be nice and golden brown, then we're gonna give it a flip, cook it again, so that is golden brown on the other side and then that's it. It's good to go. So, while that's on the pan, let me show you how we're gonna add even more flavor to our bread here. We have some sugar and we also have some cinnamon. So, we're gonna damp our cinnamon into our bowl of sugar here, just gonna give it a quick little mix just like this. If you wanted to ahead a little bit of nutmeg that will be delicious. If you have a little orange zest, so also kind of add a fresh note to this as well. So have fun with it, a recipe is nothing but a guideline that you can definitely, you know, spark up the flavors by adding different things. Okay, so this is gonna go on top. So, let's check or bread. As you can see, we're gonna have a couple of bubbles here right on top. That's a good sign. You wanna see that. Let's go and take a peek, give that flip, and that's fantastic. So, as you can see, I got nice and golden brown. We're getting a little bit of the bubbles here. Those are all good things that you're looking for a few more minutes and this is gonna be all done and ready to go, and over here, I a little station already set up. I have that one towel that I used earlier to cover my dough. I have this laying out nice and flat. We're gonna take our bread out. We're gonna transfer it here so I can relax and we wanted to stay nice and warm. So, look at that, gorgeous. Let's lay that in. Let's go ahead and add a second one just like that. It's getting little smoky. So, I'm gonna turn off my heat just turn it down just a little bit and I'm gonna let that cook. Okay, so, I have a little melted butter here, and just with the back of my spoon or pastry brush, we work well for this 2, we're just gonna do a nice thin coating of some melted butter, which is fantastic. It just gonna add flavor. It's also gonna add a beautiful shine to our bread, and then don't forget about that cinnamon and sugar we just mixed together, gonna go ahead and sprinkle them on just a like that. So, I just gonna add a nice crunch and a warm cinnamon flavor, smelling really, really good. Okay, let me take a peek here. I think it needs only a few more seconds, fantastic, and we're gonna do the same thing. We're gonna spread on some of the melted butter while it's still nice and warm here. I just gonna like to roll mine just a little bit like this and pop it right here on our plates, same thing here, roll, roll, roll and pop it right here on the plate, and there you go, look at that, easy simple dough that made in minutes, and this Lefse.

What You'll Need

  • 2   cups all-purpose flour
  • 2   tablespoons sugar or sugar substitute* equivalent to 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/8  teaspoon salt
  • 1/2  cup fat-free milk
  • 1/4  cup water
  • 3   tablespoons shortening or canola oil**
  • 2   tablespoons butter, melted
  • 3   tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4  teaspoon ground cinnamon

Step By Step

In a large bowl, stir together flour, the 2 tablespoons sugar, and the salt. In a small saucepan, heat and stir milk, the water, and shortening until warm (105 degrees F to 115 degrees F) and shortening (if using) is nearly melted. Pour over flour mixture and stir until combined. Form into a ball. Cover dough with a wet, warm kitchen towel to keep dough slightly warm and moist while forming and cooking lefse.
Pinch off about 3 tablespoons of the dough and shape into a ball. Dust dough ball lightly with flour; place on a well-floured surface. Using a well-floured lefse rolling pin, roll out dough ball into a circle about 8 inches in diameter (dough will be very thin). If necessary, lightly flour the top of the dough to prevent it from sticking to the rolling pin. Using a lefse stick or large spatula, loosen dough often, carefully pushing the stick between the dough and the rolling surface.
Heat an ungreased, large flat griddle or large skillet over medium heat. (Or preheat a lefse grill.) Drape the dough around over the lefse stick or rolling pin and transfer it to the hot griddle. Cook the lefse about 2 minutes or until very lightly browned, turning about halfway through cooking (top surface will be bubbly). Reduce heat, if necessary to prevent overbrowning. If the edge of the lefse begins to get dry, brown, and starts to curl, you are cooking the rounds too long. If the lefse remains light-colored rather than browning well, the griddle temperature is too low.
Place cooked lefse on a large kitchen towel. Cover with another kitchen towel. Repeat rolling and cooking remaining dough. Stack lefse rounds and keep covered with kitchen towels to keep them from drying out.
To serve, brush one side of each lefse round very lightly with some of the butter. In a small bowl, combine the 3 tablespoons sugar and the cinnamon; sprinkle some of the cinnamon mixture atop each lefse round. Roll up lefse rounds; cut in half to serve. Makes 9 rounds (18 servings).

Make Ahead Tip
  • Make-Ahead Directions: Place stacked lefse in an airtight container; cover. Store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week or freeze for up to 3 months. Before serving, rinse each lefse lightly with warm water and place each between kitchen towels; let stand for at least 15 minutes. When lefse are soft, serve as directed in Step 5.
  • *Sugar Substitute: Choose from Splenda® Granular, Equal® Spoonful or packets, or Sweet 'N Low® bulk or packets. Follow package directions to use amount equivalent to 2 tablespoons sugar.
    PER SERVING WITH SUBSTITUTE: same as above, except 90 cal., 13 g carbo.
  • **Test Kitchen Tip: If using canola oil, the dough will be quite sticky. Be sure to roll it out on a well-floured surface to prevent sticking.

nutrition information

Per Serving: cal. (kcal) 95, Fat, total (g) 3, chol. (mg) 4, sat. fat (g) 1, carb. (g) 14, fiber (g) 0, pro. (g) 2, sodium (mg) 28, Starch () 1, Fat () 0.5, Carb Choice () 1, Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet
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