Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Chapathis and parathas

the full menu: chapathi, paratha, bhindi, baigan bharta, rice

from The Art of Indian Vegetarian Cooking
This is for 4 chapathis and 2 parathas for 2 hungry people; multiply as you wish.

2/3 c whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 c all-purpose white flour
1/2 t salt
1 T melted butter (or ghee, if you're more awesome than me)
slightly less than 1/3 c warm (wrist-temp) water
melted butter for brushing

Sift together flours into a bowl and mix in the salt. Drizzle in the melted butter and mix with your fingertips as for biscuits. Pour in the half the water, mixing with your fingers as you go, until it forms a cohesive blob. Continue to knead and slowly add more water as needed to form a nice pliable dough. Knead for a few more minutes. When you're happy with the smoothness and pliableness, swirl the ball of dough in the residual melted butter, then cover and let rest in a warm/hot place for 45 min.

Sprinkle a little bit of flour on a clean work surface. Knead the dough for a minute, cut it in half, and cut each half into one big piece (just over a third) and two small pieces (just under a third). Make big pieces into parathas: roll out into a 6" circle, brush the top with melted butter, fold in half, brush with butter again, fold in half again, and roll out into a 6" triangle. Make the small pieces into chapathis: just roll out into a 6" circle.

Preheat two cast-iron frying pans on medium and brush one with butter. After a few minutes when the pans are hot, fry the chapathis in the dry pan and the parathas in the buttered pan, flipping when the bottom side gets brown spots and the top is puffing. Wrap in a towel while cooking the rest.

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