[Sca-cooks] cuskynoles

lilinah at earthlink.net lilinah at earthlink.net
Sun Aug 1 10:41:59 PDT 2010

Katherine wrote:
>How intersting that the way to cut out the dough was as small circles.  I
>think she is telling us parenthetically that the word 'nan' implies a
>circular shape.  Modernly does nan/naan mean this?  Or could it be also
>translated as loaf?

Then and now "nan" is Persian for "bread" - the word is used in 
cognate languages, and was borrowed by other unrelated South and 
Central Asian languages. In Persian it is written with an alif, which 
is a strong "a", so is pronounced almost like "non". Nan bread does 
not come in loaves. It comes in breads: one nan, two nan (whatever 
the plural is, nan-i (?)), three nan, etc.

Nan can be cooked slapped onto the sides of a tannur (the original 
Arabic word; So. Asian word "tandoor" comes from "tundur", the Turkic 
pronunciation of tannur), on the floor of a tannur on a tray of hot 
pebbles, on a pan on a charcoal fire, etc.

I haven't heard of an historical humpy lumpy Persian loaf cooked in an oven.

Now, the Arabic khubz (means "bread") can be flat and cooked on the 
walls of a tannur, or in a tray on the floor of a tannur, or on a 
convex iron pan on a charcoal fire, or in some other type of pan on a 
charcoal fire, AND it CAN be humpy lumpy and cooked in a more 
European style oven, "furn", in which case it is rounded, somewhat 
like a French boule, but quite unlike it in texture and flavor. This 
Arabic word goes back to Medieval times in al-Andalus, borrowed from 
the Spanish or Catalan for oven.

Historically nan and most forms of khubz are flatbreads and i just 
don't think of flatbreads like ruqaq (which is like lavash) or nan 
(some of which are can be 3 feet long but about 3/4 inch high) as 

BTW, in kushknanaj/kushkananaj, the stress is on the syllable "-nan".
Urtatim [that's err-tah-TEEM]
the persona formerly known as Anahita

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