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Mar 16, 2019

No Knead Ksra (Moroccan Anise and Barley Flatbread)

Ksra  (pronounced Kesra) is a Moroccan flatbread, often flavored with anise, nigella, fennel, or sesame seeds. 

No Knead Ksra (Moroccan Anise and Barley Flatbread)

In this case, this Ksra is flavored with anise seeds, and includes barley flour, which I happened to have on hand. If you don't have barley flour, you can substitute another whole ancient grain such as spelt, kamut, or buckwheat, semolina, or even some rye.

I love the nutty taste of barley and have used the flour in breads such as this sour cherry, peanut, and barley sourdough, and this sourdough barley bread with figs and pecans. I definitely have a "problem" with accumulating ingredients, but I felt vindicated by having the barley flour in my freezer to make this ksra.

I've also made Kesra before, using corn meal in the dough and topping the bread with sesame seeds. I had found the recipe in the book, Flavors of Morocco.

This no knead version comes from the book, The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. One of the authors said that he bought this bread from a street vendor at a rest stop in Morocco while on a sixteen hour bus ride and it helped carry him through.

No Knead Ksra

Like the last kesra I made, this bread is thicker than typical flatbreads. While you shape it into a fairly flat disk, it will rise quite a bit in the oven. In fact, it's hard to actually call it flatbread.

This bread is super easy to make. In fact, it takes almost no effort. You mix the flours, water, salt, seeds, and yeast by hand, and let the dough rise and collapse before placing it in the refrigerator. The next day (or up to four days later), you shape and bake the dough.

This bread is super light with a thin and crispy crust. You can tell how light and airy it is the minute you lift the loaf and it seems lighter than air.

We loved this bread with soups and stews. It's also fabulous spread with salted butter.

Moroccan Anise and Barley Flatbread

I baked this bread using an upside down foil pan inverted over a baking stone to create steam. You can also set up a steam pan in your oven under the baking stone.

For a thinner Moroccan flatbread, be sure to try Rgaif, which is a folded and pan-baked bread. It is crispy and can be filled or unfilled. 

This month, the Bread Baking Babes are baking along with Kelly of A Messy Kitchen.

No Knead Ksra (Moroccan Anise and Barley Flatbread) #ksra #moroccanrecipes

bread, no knead bread, ksra, kesra
Yield: 2 one pound loaves

No Knead Ksra (Moroccan Anise and Barley Flatbread)

prep time: cook time: total time:


  • 340 grams (1 1/2 cups) lukewarm water
  • 5 grams (1 1/2 teaspoons) instant yeast
  • 10 to 12 grams (1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons) kosher salt
  • 3.5 grams (1 1/2 teaspoons) whole anise seeds
  • 45 grams (generous 1/3 cup) barley flour
  • 407 grams (generous 2 3/4 cups) unbleached all purpose flour


  1. In a large bowl, mix all of the ingredients with your hand until all of the flours are incorporated and the ingredients are evenly distributed. 
  2. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let rise about two hours, until the dough has risen and collapsed. Place the dough in the refrigerator over night and up to four days. 
  3. When ready to bake, remove the dough from the bowl and place it on a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough in half and form each half into a ball. 
  4. Flatten each ball into a 3/4 inch thick disk and place them on a cornmeal dusted piece of parchment paper. Cover with oiled plastic wrap and let rest for 40 to 50 minutes to take the chill off. It won't rise very much. 
  5. In the meantime, set your oven up with your baking stone (if you have one) and steam pan and heat the oven to 450 degrees F. 
  6. Slide the loaves, parchment and all, onto the stone and add boiling water to the steam pan. Immediately close the oven door. 
  7. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until browned. 
Created using The Recipes Generator
The Babes who baked along are:

Would you like to comment?

  1. Gorgeous crumb! And yes, it is a rather rotund "flatbread"! The grilled version was a little flatter because you flip it, but still just as light and still thick. The surprise was turning the other half of a sourdough batch of this dough into the best waffles I have ever made.

  2. Beautimus! What a lovely crumb. I like how fluffy your bread is. Mine was definitely flatter due to the sourdough and whole grains, but the flavor is wonderful!

  3. Your bread looks beautiful!! Clearly it's a very good idea to flatten the round.

  4. Another beauty from the oven of the Bread Goddess, aka Karen!

    indeed, it is a very plump flatbread, which in my mind only makes it even better!

  5. Your Ksra's gorgeous! Love that fluffy and airy looking crumb.

  6. When I read this post, it transported me back to our visits to Morocco. The bread was on carts in all the towns and villages we visited. They were so many variations. I knew I had to try this one...with a little variation:
    Thanks for the inspiration Karen.

    1. Thank you! How lucky to have visited Morocco! Your bread looks wonderful.

  7. Hi, Karen. Where do you buy barley flour? Is there a particular kind you recommend?
    Thanks, Marjorie

    1. I've been able to find it in the Bob's Red Mill Section of my grocery store. I'm pretty sure King Arthur sells it too.


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