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arepa  Pronunciation:  ah-RAY-pah  Notes:  This is a Venezuelan bread that's round and flat and usually made of cornmeal.  It's usually split open and stuffed with grated cheese, cooked meats, and other fillings. Substitutes: corn tortilla OR pita bread

Armenian cracker bread  See cracker bread


baked pizza crust = prebaked pizza shell    Notes:   This precooked pizza shell makes it easy to whip up a quick homemade pizza.  Just add some toppings and bake it briefly in an oven.  Boboli is a well-known brand. Substitutes:   focaccia OR fougasse OR bread dough (roll flat before baking)

bammy = bammy bread = yucca cake    Notes:  Jamaicans love to butter these cakes and eat them with fish.  Bammies are made of grated cassava, and often soaked in coconut milk before being fried.


barbari bread = nan-e barbari = Persian flat bread  Notes:   This flatbread hails from Iran.  Substitutes:   sangak bread

Boboli  See baked pizza crust.


bolo de milho  Notes:  This is a Brazilian corn cake.  Substitutes:  corn tortilla


chapati = chappati = chapatti = roti = Indian flat bread   Notes:    This unleavened flatbread is a staple in India, where people spread ghee on it and eat it with curries.  You can make it yourself with wheat flour, salt, and water, or buy it ready-made in Indian markets.  Substitutes:  flour tortilla (This is thicker than a chapati.) OR paratha OR naan OR pita bread

chapatti  See chapati

chappati  See chapati


corn tortilla    Notes:   These thin round wraps are widely used in southern Mexico, and they're the preferred tortilla for making tacos and enchiladas.  They should be served hot.   If you're watching calories, do this by cooking them on a hot, dry frying pan or by wrapping them in moist paper towels and briefly heating them in a microwave oven.  If calories aren't an issue, fry them in oil.  You can make corn tortillas at home if you have a tortilla press.  Just mix masa harina with enough water to make a bread-like dough, press the dough until it's very thin, and then cook the tortilla in a hot, dry frying pan.  Readymade corn tortillas are available in most supermarkets. Substitutes: flour tortilla (more pliable, higher in fat) OR taco shell OR cornmeal crèpes made with 1 cup cornmeal + 1/2 teaspoon salt + 1/2 cup flour + 1 egg + 2 cups water OR corn chips


cracker bread = lavash = lawaash = paraki = Armenian cracker bread = lahvosh = lavosh = lawasha = naan-e-lavaash   Notes:   This is a large flat Middle Eastern bread that comes either hard (like a cracker) or soft (like a tortilla). You can soften hard lavash by moistening both sides and then placing it in a plastic bag for a few hours.   Substitutes: matzo OR naan (thicker and not as large) OR flour tortilla (not as large)

doilies  See Mandarin pancakes.

Ethiopian flat bread  See injera.


flour tortilla    Notes:   These thin flour wraps from northern Mexico are used to make burritos, chimichangas, fajitas and other Mexican dishes.  They're more pliable than corn tortillas, so they're a good choice if you need to roll or fold the tortillas before cooking them.  Flour tortillas come in different sizes, including small, thick "fajita tortillas" to large, thin "burrito tortillas."   Substitutes: corn tortilla (These are lower in fat and less pliable.  If using these to make enchiladas, soften them by dipping in warm chicken stock before rolling them.) OR chapati


focaccia   Pronunciation:  foh-KAH-chee-uh   Notes:   A focaccio is an Italian flatbread that resembles a pizza crust without the topping.  Many cooks top it with cheese, onions, herbs, eggplant slices, and other ingredients before baking it, but you can also serve it plain.   Substitutes:  fougasse OR baked pizza crust OR bread dough (roll flat before baking)

fougasse   Pronunciation:    foo-GAHS  Notes:   This is the French version of Italy's focaccia.   Substitutes:  focaccia OR baked pizza crust


gordita   Pronunciation:    gore-DEE-tah  Notes:  A "gordita" (Spanish for "little fat one") is like a corn tortilla, only smaller and fatter.  It inflates a bit when grilled, so it can be split to form a pocket and filled.  Substitutes:  corn tortilla OR pita OR flour tortilla OR chalupa (similar, but shaped like a boat)

hönö = hono = honokakor  Notes:  These Swedish flatbread is made with rye flour and flavored with aniseed and fennel seed.


idli   Notes:  A south Indian specialty, these rice cakes are steamed, then served with sauces.  Substitutes:  naan OR paratha OR chapati

Indian flat bread  See chapati.

Indian fry bread   Notes:   A specialty of Native Americans in the Southwest, this flatbread is deep-fried just before serving.   Substitutes: pita bread OR flour tortilla


injera = Ethiopian flat bread    Pronunciation:   in-JER-ah  Notes:   Ethiopians use this slightly sour flat bread as both a plate and spoon when eating their traditional stews.  The injera becomes saturated with juices, and is eaten at the end of the meal.  Substitutes:  flour tortilla (thinner) OR naan

lahvosh  See cracker bread

lavash  See cracker bread

lavosh  See cracker bread. 

lawaash  See cracker bread

lawasha   See cracker bread.

lefse   Pronunciation:   LEFF-suh   Notes:   This Norwegian flatbread resembles a flour tortilla, only it's made with mashed potatoes.  It's used as a wrapper for various sandwich fillings.   Dried lefse should be moistened, then heated briefly in a microwave.  Substitutes:  flour tortilla


Mandarin pancakes = doilies = Peking doilies = mu shu shells = moo shu shells = Peking duck wrappers   Notes:   These very thin crèpes are used to make mu shu dishes.  You can buy them in the frozen foods sections of Asian markets, but they're easy to make at home.  Substitutes:  flour tortilla 


naan   Pronunciation:   NAWN  Notes:  This Indian flatbread is made with wheat flour.  It's usually served hot.   Substitutes:  chapati OR flour tortilla OR pita OR paratha OR rice (This is another traditional accompaniment to Indian dishes.)

paraki  See cracker bread

paratha  Pronunciation:  pah-RAH-tah  Notes:  This flaky Indian flatbread is made like puff pastry, in that the dough is repeatedly rolled flat, brushed with clarified butter, folded, and then rolled again.  When fried, the bread becomes light and flaky.  It's served with kebabs and stews, or stuffed with various fillings.   Substitutes:  chapati OR flour tortilla

piadina = piada = pié  Pronunciation: pyah-DEE-nah  Notes:  This pliable Italian flatbread is usually stuffed with filling, much as tortillas are in Latin America.   The plural is piadine.   Substitutes:  flour tortilla

piada  See piadina.

pié   See piadina.

 pida bread  See pita bread.


pita bread = pocket bread = pide bread = khubz = baladi    Pronunciation:  PEE-tuh   Notes:    This puffy Middle Eastern flatbread is often cut in half, pulled open to form a pocket, and then filled with hot savory ingredients.  It's also served like bread at meals, or cut into wedges, toasted, and served with dips.  Look for pita bread among the baked goods in supermarkets.  Substitutes:  flour tortilla

pocket bread  See pita bread.


pupusa  Notes:  A specialty of El Salvador, these are tortillas stuffed with cheese and other flavorings.  

roti  See chapati

sangak bread = Iranian bread = naneh sangak  Notes:  This Iranian flatbread is about two feet long, enough for the whole family.  Substitutes:  pita bread OR naan

sope    Notes:  Mexican cooks put various savory toppings on these corn patties.  Look for them in Hispanic markets.  Substitutes:  corn tortilla OR gordita


taco shell   Notes:   These are crunchy corn tortillas that have been loosely folded and deep-fried.  You just fill them and serve.  Look for boxes of them among the Mexican foods in your supermarket, or make them yourself by deep-frying corn tortillas, forming them into a U-shape, then allowing them to harden into a crispy shell.  Substitutes:  corn tortilla (Using this converts a crispy taco into a "soft taco.") OR flour tortilla OR corn chips


tortilla   Pronunciation:  tore-TEE-yuh  Notes:   These thin wraps are used to make countless Mexican dishes.   Corn tortillas have little or no fat, and they're the preferred tortilla for making tacos and enchiladas.  Flour tortillas are softer, higher in fat, and more pliable.  They're traditionally used to make burritos, chimichangas, fajitas, flautas, and quesadillas, though some cooks use them to make everything from spring rolls to peanut butter sandwiches.   Before filling tortillas, cook them briefly on a hot, dry frying pan or wrap them in damp paper towels and heat them in the microwave.   Store uncooked tortillas in the refrigerator or freezer.   Substitutes: chapati OR naan OR pita bread

Copyright © 1996-2005  Lori Alden