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No meal is complete without -Roti. An Indian flat bread made from scratch that I can only describe as a flaky, crispy bread that bubbles as soon as the soft dough hits the heat. Listen to it sizzle on the pan, the bubbles bursting up like little mouths that want to speak . It crackles when ripped apart, and it’s fragrance is reminiscent of a time when I was a child, and I felt safe and protected from the world.
It’s hard to say where Roti originated from as in the past, it was a staple in many civilisations. Some say that it originated from Egypt. Others say that it was a staple in east Africa, among the Swahili speaking people. Chapati, which is another name for Roti is mentioned in old Sanskrit text from over 6000 years ago. When India started cultivating grains in bulk , and learned to grind them and mix them with water – Roti was born!
I can’t imagine having a bowl of curry without roti. In fact, you can have this bread any way you like! In India, It is traditionally eaten with curry, but there’s no harm in putting a new twist on an old favourite . Use it as a wrap for a sandwich, or slather it with peanut butter and jam. Why not drizzle on some syrup, a bucket load of cinnamon, and vegan butter!! All options sound absolutely delicious!
3 cups organic white flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/4 cups cold water
Extra flour for rolling
Olive oil for brushing
You begin by mixing all the dry ingredients together, that is – the white flour, baking soda, and salt. Then you simply add cold water and using your hand you coax the mixture round and round until you get a sticky dough ball. The Ingredients are very simple, but it’s actually the technique that makes a roti- a roti! This was said by recipe creator and YouTuber Morris time cooking.
Once you get a sticky dough, you shape it into a long log and cut it into equal pieces. For this recipe you get 6 rotis. Then, you shape your hand into a cup and using the palm of your hand you make each piece into a round ball. This is to ensure that we get a nice round disc once we roll out the dough. Once all your dough has been rolled into balls a little bigger than golf balls, you then flour your rolling pin, counter top, and don’t forget to dip each ball into some flour. Then roll it out into a nice big circle. Brush on some olive oil on to the flat surface of the dough so there are no dry spots, and then sift some flour on to of the oil. This will help the dough create flaky layers of goodness and so will the next step. Cut a line from the centre of the dough out to the edge, and create a triangle and roll. Repeat the process until the last piece, and then tuck it into the top of the cone shaped dough that you’ve just created. Eventually this will turn your cone shaped dough back into a ball. Brush with oil so as not to dry out and set aside. Repeat this process for all the dough balls, and now roll out each dough into a large round circle and place on your frying pan. As your roti is cooking, using a pastry brush – brush some olive oil on to the surface and let it cook for about a minute, then flip it and repeat the process about 4 times until you see your roti is bubbling up and brown spots are forming on the surface! Enjoy everyone! Or, As they would say in India – Apane bhojana ka ananda Lem