Barbari - Iranian flat bread

Welcome to another step-by-step recipe from BreadClub20. Why not drop by our main Facebook page by clicking here.... If you like what you see and enjoy the recipe, we hope you go on to join us by 'Liking' and 'Subscribing'.

Fancy a tasty flatbread that doesn't need frying? One that doesn't need masses of preparatory work and yet will be ideal to have with dips, olives or to 'mop up' tasty juices? Then Barbari might be the perfect choice.  

Barbari  or Noon Barbari or Nan Barbari is a popular Persian flatbread. Noon or Nan in Farsi means 'bread' and Babari is often served for breakfast or with: 

  • feta cheese (panir)
  • walnuts (gerdu)
  • clotted cream (sar shir)
  • topped with honey (asal)
  • butter (kareh)
  • jam (moraba)
  • grapes (angur)
  • cucumbers (khiar)....or any combination of the above....
Or, of course.....with whatever you have to hand. Tonight, I'm having it with buffalo chicken wings, hummus, olives, salad and coleslaw. 
Barbari is baked across Iran but every bakery has their own signature way of preparing and baking the breads. Bakers often work in shifts so that Barbari is available throughout the day. 

You'll find Barbari sold as flat slices, in the shape of ridged slippers, as small rolls and as long thin breads. You'll find them topped with sesame (both black and white) or black caraway as well as just drizzled or glazed with oil. 

The word Barbari is an obsolete term for the Hazara people who lived in Khorasan, Iran. The bread was first baked by the Barabari people and taken to Tehran during the Qajar dynasty (18th century). The term Barbari means 'Easterner'. The Hazaras were descended from the Mongolian races and the term became too associated with 'barbarians' for comfort so Barbari as a term for the Hazaras became obsolete but the bread retained its name. 


225 gms strong white bread flour

140 gms lukewarm filtered water

1 teaspoon sea salt (dissolved in the water)

6 gms of instant active yeast

olive oil / sesame seeds for glazing


1. Prepare two baking sheets - line with parchment paper or silicone and dust with flour.

2.  Add the salted water to the flour and mix together.

3. Add the yeast and mix thoroughly. 

4. Knead for about 8 - 10 minutes until the dough becomes smooth and elastic.

If you have a bread machine, you can use the short Pizza programme and stop the machine when the dough is formed. If you have a stand mixer, start on low and mix on medium until the dough has formed. 

5. Oil a bowl and place the dough in the bowl. Cover and leave in a warm place to rise for 45 - 60 minutes. The dough should have doubled in the time. 

6. Tip the dough out onto a floured surface and knock back. 

7. Divide into 6 equal pieces (or 3 if you want large Barbari) and shape into rectangles or ovals.

8. Roll out until they are about 1 cm thick. 

9. Space out well apart on the baking trays and make four slashes on the top of each barbari

Don't worry about the shape.....ha! I didn't!!

10. Cover and leave to rise in a warm place for about 20 minutes. 

11. Preheat the oven to 200⁰C. 

12. Brush the breads with oil and sprinkle with sesame seeds if so desired. 

13. Bake for 12 - 15 minutes until pale golden. 

14. Serve warm or warm through when you are ready to serve. 

Happy baking......


Whilst it's clear that Barbari comes in a variety of shapes and styles, there seems to be a body of public opinion that favours the long slipper-shaped bread with ridges. To be honest, the recipe is more or less the's all in the shaping. 

Watch this someone once said....


Popular Posts