Makin’ Chapati – a quick Indian flat bread

Chapati – quick Indian flat bread recipe

Ingredients to makes about 10 chapatis (or is it chapat-eye?)

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ¾ cup warm water or as needed

Instructions:

  • Mix together the flours and salt in a large bowl. Use a wooden spoon (I don’t know why) to stir in the olive oil and enough water to make a soft elastic dough but not a sticky one (aka add water bit by bit)
  • Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface until it is smooth – just a couple minutes. I found I needed to wet my hands a bit as the dough was a bit dry for me ( I made a half batch). Divide into 10 chunks, or however many chapatis you want to end up with (bigger=fewer, smaller=more). Roll each piece into a ball with your hands and let rest for a few minutes.
  • Heat a skillet over medium heat until hot, and grease lightly with a little extra oil (olive or otherwise).
  • On a lightly floured surface, use a floured rolling pin to roll out the balls of dough until very thin like a tortilla. When the pan starts smoking, put a chapati on it. Cook until the underside has brown spots, about 30 seconds, then flip and cook on the other side. Thickness of chapatti various from region to region, so play around with it to see what you like best.

I plan to try cooking on the grill next time- could be awesome or smoky disaster. This time I made just a half batch the first time and rolled them into smaller balls. They turned out pretty yummy – not round though, more Antarctica or Greenland shaped. Might be a great way to lean the countries and entertain guests or sneakily conduct a Rorschach inkblot test (sly psychiatry). Being smaller they were easy to move from the counter to the pan. Big ones might get a big floppy. Other modifications for next time – incorporate herbs or spices to dough (not too much though), adding butter or ghee to top etc.  I might also use this as a reason to by a tortilla press….

The rest of the dinner was pretty simple. Costco chicken korma popped in the oven and grilled sweet peppers with yogurt dipping sauce. For the yogurt, I mixed in a dash of salt and some Parnami family masala, but you could do just about any combinations to make a quick pseudo-raita: cilantro/garlic, chutney, curry, cardamom… Total time was just about 30 minutes from starting to heat oven up, hatching the plan to make chapatti from scratch till plated and photographed.

Smokin’!

Chapati, also referred to as roti (which technically are made with only all purpose flour), is found in many countries under different names/variations (India to Africa to Southeast Asia to China (laobing) to Pakistan(doday)) . It is an unleavened bread that makes for one tasty utensil.

Goan Proverb: Fry the chapatti, while the pan is hot!

So, what are you waiting for!

Need some second opinions?

Thank you, All Recipes! http://allrecipes.com/recipe/indian-chapati-bread/  and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chapati

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