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Roti

The basic, everyday wholewheat flatbread (also known as chapati) adds a chewy, nutty element to your meal.

Roti

Makes 10 breads

You can find chapati flour (atta) in most large supermarkets but if you can’t get any, use equal quantities of wholewheat and plain flour. Roti can be made in advance and reheated, wrapped in foil, in a medium oven.

300g chapati flour (atta) plus more to dust
salt (optional)
200-240ml water

Sift flour and some salt (if using) into a bowl and make a well in the centre.

Slowly drizzle in most of the water. Using your hand, draw the flour into the centre, mixing all the time.

You may not need all the water, as flour absorbs different amounts depending on its age and the moisture content in the air.

The dough should be slightly sticky and almost squeak as you knead, but will firm up as you work it.

Knead for eight to 10 minutes, or until the dough seems elastic. Place in a bowl, cover with a damp tea towel and leave for 30 minutes.

Divide the dough into 10 portions and roll into golf ball-sized balls, then cover. Flour your work surface and rolling pin.

Roll each ball into 12-15cm circles. The best way to do this is to keep rolling in one direction, giving the dough quarter-turns.

Heat a tava (an Indian flat griddle pan) or a non-stick frying pan until quite hot. Toss a roti from one hand to the other to remove excess flour, then place on the tava.

Reduce heat to medium, cook until small bubbles appear underneath, 10-20 seconds, then flip. Cook this side until it has small, dark beige spots.

The best way to puff a roti is to place it over an open flame (with the brown spotted side on the top), using tongs. It will puff up immediately. Cook for 10 seconds until dark spots appear; I like to move it around the flame for even puffing. Place on a plate. Repeat with remaining roti.

If you only have an electric cooker, press the cooked roti gently over the heat; as you press one area the rest should puff up. Then move on to the next area. This way the roti should puff up all over.

Keep the bread warm by wrapping in a napkin or foil and keeping it in a low oven while you make the rest.

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