Sesame and black lime barbari

Sesame and black lime barbari

Middle Eastern
20 mins Prep · 30 mins Cook

There’s a certain science behind this unusually thick yeast-leavened flatbread, originally formulated by the Barbari tribe of Iran’s mountainous Khorasan region. Its filling, energy-giving density makes it a popular option for suhoor during Ramadan, while the pretzel-like surface colour and texture comes from amino acids reacting with sugars during baking – a chemical process known as ‘Maillard reaction’. Sesame is a common traditional topping, and we’ve added black lime for an extra citric bite

Created by Spinneys
Prep time 20 minutes
Proofing Time 60 minutes
Cook time 30 minutes
Serves 1
Cuisine Middle Eastern
Diet Vegan
Preparation Moderate
Nutrition (per serving)
Calories 2154
Fat 16.9g
Saturates 2g
Protein 77.1g
Carbs 400.8g
Sugars 21.7g
Given the cook-at-home nature of Spinneys and natural variations in ingredients, nutritional information is approximated. See details

Cooking Instructions

Download PDF

Place the yeast, sugar, flour and fine sea salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and mix well. Gradually add the warm water until a soft dough forms. Increase the speed to medium and continue to mix until a smooth dough forms – the dough will still be sticky and stick to the bottom of the bowl. This should take approx. 5 minutes. Transfer the dough to a clean work surface and knead the dough, dusting with additional flour to prevent sticking, for approx. 5 minutes until smooth and elastic.


Transfer to an oiled bowl and cover with cling film. Place in a warm spot and allow the dough to double in size over the next hour.


To make the paste, combine the cake flour, bicarbonate of soda, oil and 375ml water in a saucepan. Whisk over a medium heat until the mixture has thickened slightly. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.


Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 220°C, gas mark 7. Place a pizza stone or a baking tray in the oven to heat for 20 minutes.


Knock the risen dough back and divide into two. On a floured surface, work the dough into a rectangle shape, approx. 5cm thick. With wet fingers, create ridges in the dough (lengthways, being careful not to pierce the bottom of the dough). Brush the dough with the cooked paste.


To make the topping, finely grind the black lime. Combine the salt, nigella seeds, sesame seeds and black lime powder in a bowl. Scatter the mixture over the dough.


Carefully transfer the dough from the counter to the pizza stone or baking tray, and bake for 10-12 minutes until crisp and golden.