Chapatis or chappattis are usually made from wheat flour and eaten with most Indian curries. Different Regions of India have their own unique style of making chapatis. In Kenya, the locals make them big and quite thick and often fry them but call them roti. I like to make small and thinly rolled out chapatis.
And no Indian meal is complete without either the chapati or paratha of some kind. I have recently started to mix other flours to my chapati flour and am really enjoying the taste. This recipe is made up of mixing 2 cups of strong white flour with one cup of corn flour.
2 cups of Strong White flour – preferrably chapati flour
1 cup corn flour
1 teaspoon of dried oregano
pinch of salt
half cup flour – to use when rolling out the chapatis
2 teaspoons of olive oil (you can use any oil)
butter or ghee to spread on the chapati (optional)
1 cup of warm water
1. Sieve the two flours.
2. Add the salt, oregano and oil.
3. Using warm water, mix the flour well. Make sure that you pour the water in small amounts so that the dough doesn’t get too soft. Spread some oil in your palms and knead until the dough feels pliable – almost like “play dough”. Leave the dough on a floured surface for 5 minutes.
4. Now mix your dough folding it in as you mix. Cover the dough and let it rest for at least half an hour. If you have time, leave it in the fridge for as long as you can. Leaving it in the fridge overnight and then making these chapatis produces the best results. When you are ready to make the chapatis, take out the dough and warm it in the microwave for 20 seconds. Knead it well and if the flour still feels cold, you can warm it again for 10 or 20 seconds. The dough should become slightly warm, smooth and pliable.
5. Divide the flour into 15 small balls as shown below:
6. Dust each ball using the dry flour and roll out the chapati. You can use any rolling pin and a work top if you do not have a pastry stand. Making perfect round chapatis does take a bit of practice. The trick to a perfect chapati is to ensure that it rolled out evenly. Grip the rolling pin gently placing the palms of your hands on the at the edges of the rolling pin. Dust some dry flour on the worktop let the chapati almost roll itself. Try and resist pressing too hard in the centre of the chapati. The same pressure should be on the whole chapati. Please don’t be put off if the shape of the chapati looks like the map of Africa or USA….the proof of the pudding is in the taste!! Practice makes perfect
7. Cook it on medium heat using a griddle or dry frying pan. As soon as you can see little bubbles appear on its surface turn it over onto the o ther side. Press the chappatti gently; with dry kitchen paper. The air in the chapati will start to rise when you press the chapati with the kitchen paper. Keep turning the chapati until it rises or you get little dark spots. Be careful when it rises as the hot air can scald your hands.
8. Remove the chapati and keep it on a plate. Make sure that the plate is covered with a kitchen paper . The hot chapati causes condensation and the kitchen paper keeps the chapati dry. If you like you can spread some butter or ghee on the chapati and continue making the rest, stacking them like pancakes. If you decide not to spread butter or ghee on the chapatis, my advice would be to keep the chapatis covered with a clean cloth. This will keep them soft. These chapatis taste just as nice as the ones made with just strong wheat flour ones.
9. Serve it with rice and any curry. I made mung dall with my chapatis.