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The word Nankhatai is derived from Persian word Naan meaning bread and "Khatai" from a Dari Persian word meaning Biscuit.In Afghanistan and Northeast Iran, these biscuits are called Kulcha-e-Khataye. Kulcha is a type of Indian bread similar to Naan.

History of Nan Khatai

Nankhatai is believed to have originated in Surat in the 16th century, the time when Dutch and Indians were the important spice traders.A Dutch couple set up a bakery in Surat to meet the needs of local Dutch residents. When the Dutch left India, they handed over the bakery to an Iranian.[5] The bakery biscuits were disliked by the locals.

To save his business he started selling dried bread at low prices. It became so popular that he started drying the bread before selling it. With time, his experimentation with bread ultimately gave birth to nankhatai.