Sunday, November 10, 2013

Lavash Flatbread

Lavash Wrap
If you’re on a low sodium diet, you know the difficulty bread products present. Grocery store breadstuffs are loaded with sodium. From the humongous bagels to Kalamata olive & Parmesan studded artisan loaves. Even sliced sandwich-style loaves can be too high for daily consumption. And the few low or no sodium breads commercially available can be downright tasteless. That’s why it’s such a big deal to discover a decent low sodium product that’s OK for everyday use.

Presenting lavash. Lavash is a soft, thin flatbread of Middle Eastern origin. It’s perfect for wraps, appetizers, or snacks. I’ve found two sources for this wonderful flatbread: California Lavash and Trader Joe’s. The Trader Joe’s versions come in whole wheat or white, while the California Lavash also has a spinach variety.

California Lavash has 140 mg sodium for its traditional and spinach, while the whole grain version is only 90 mg sodium per sheet. Trader Joe’s version is heftier: a single sheet is 320 mg sodium. However, each TJ lavash sheet contains 2 servings. So if you cut the sheets in half, each serving is 160 mg sodium.
California Whole Grain Lavash & Trader Joe's Whole Wheat Lavash
I use lavash regularly for lunchtime “sandwich” wraps. You can spread them with mayonnaise, cream cheese, hummus, mashed avocado – anything you can think of that would keep them pliable for rolling up. Add some chutney, hot pepper jelly, pesto for some zing. Filling possibilities are endless: tuna salad, egg salad, chicken salad, sliced meat, sliced cheese, sloppy joe filling, taco filling – you name it. Just make sure everything is well drained. You don’t want the wrap to turn soggy. Then pile on the vegetables: roasted red peppers, roasted green chilies, roasted/grilled eggplant slices, thinly sliced cucumbers, red onions, green or red peppers, coleslaw, pickles, spinach leaves, lettuce – whatever your heart desires. I can get two good sized wraps from one TJ lavash sheet. Same with the California Lavash too, although they are a bit smaller.
Ready to Roll
For a sweet treat, spread them with peanut, almond, or cashew butter and your favorite jam. How about some Nutella or another chocolate spread? Or maybe Biscoff cookie spread. Add some fresh banana slices or some banana chips for crunch. Maybe a sprinkling of dried cranberries, raisins, or chopped nuts.

Lavash are especially handy for appetizers or snacks. Spread a base like cream cheese that will keep the flatbread supple but not let it get soggy. Layer on some sliced meat & cheese and a strip of pickle or roasted red pepper and roll it up. Cut into 1/2 – 3/4 inch pinwheels and you’re set.

Lavash are very low in fat, so that means they can dry out quickly. One hint I have is to lightly spray water from a mister onto the sheets before filling. The sheets get moistened just a touch but are more flexible when rolling.

I’ve found California Lavash at all my local grocery stores. I encourage you to give lavash a try. Look for them or ask about them at your local grocery store. It’s a great product for weekday lunches and for impromptu appetizers. And much lower in sodium than the flour tortillas that are often used for wraps. The California Lavash website has a lot of interesting recipes that should be easy to adapt to low sodium.

1 comment:

Jenny said...

These are the absolute best! I load them up with veggies and hummus- it's like a handheld salad. Hope they never stop selling them.