Neanderthal `Flat Bread´

@Eva Kemp

Chris Hunt, a palaeoecologist, provided a recipe for a flatbread that could have been made by Neanderthals, who were living in the Shanidar Caves. It is thought that this is the world’s oldest flatbread. The scanning electron microscopic analysis from the carbonised plant food remains show evidence for pulses. The edited instructions were published in Nature Briefing on Tuesday 13 December 2022, which stated “I’m sharing on the understanding that you will send me your photos and reviews of your own efforts: Neanderthal ‘flatbread’ Based on an analysis by archaeobotanist Ceren Kabukcu, Hunt and their colleagues at Shanidar Cave in the north-west Zagros Mountains. “Following this recipe, you get something quite earthy tasting from the lentils and quite toasty, too, from the ‘grass’ seeds,” says Hunt.”


  • 100 g Pot Barley
  • 50 g Brown Lentils


  1. Soak overnight and then drain.
  2. Pound in a pestle and mortar and/or use an electric grinder to make
    a thick paste.
  3. Place the paste on a flat griddle or frying pan.
  4. Cook gently, browning on each side ~15–20 minutes on a low heat.

After Soaking:

After Grinding:

After Pounding with Pestle:

Combined Pastes and After Cooking:

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