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The Indian Chapati

A Chapati That Does Not Puff Up

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At home, we mostly eat vegetarian meals. When I cook chickpeas and masala dhal in all vegetarian, the meal does not seem complete without having to serve with some flatbread chapati. So, I decided to make some chapati. I asked Zul for the recipe and ways to make a proper chapati.

I had several times making some chapati at home. The flatbread chapati that I made, when heated up on the hot pan, it doesn’t puff up but it only gets spots of blackening surface during the heating process.

Supposedly, when a flattened dough sheet is heated up on the hot pan, the chapati should at first puff up like a whoopee cushion. Then, the dough that had been puffed up will only begin to accumulate some scorched spots on its surface due to the heating process over the hot pan. Unless the chapati is puffed up, we will not get a soft chapati. A ready cooked chapati that has a hard texture is a show of lacking skills in making a proper Indian flatbread. The end product of chapati that I made is always hard in its textures.

I am trying to reason out why the chapati that I make does not puff up like any given guidance shown on the youtube. Every piece of the flattened dough heated up by them on the hot pan, the dough will puff up very effortlessly. Looking back at my chapati, I may have missed out some very essential techniques in making a proper Indian flatbread.

Because the chapati that I make tends not to puff up, I need to heat them up longer over the hot pan in order to dry up the water contents of the bread dough and most importantly to make sure the dough is well cooked. I ended up not only making some pieces of partially burned chapati but I have had hard texture chapati too. When I serve the chapati that I made, I have to peel off the scorched spots of the partially burned surface of the chapati before I put them on the table.

The Indian grocery store attendant recommended me the atta flour to make chapati. There are other types of flour eligible to make chapati but atta flour is the best-recommended wheat flour. The atta flour is also used to make other types of Indian flatbread such as nan and puri.

When I make chapati, instead of using a standard measurement cup, I measured the atta flour with a rice bowl normally used for dinner by the Chinese householders. Two full bowls of attar flour after kneading it with some oil, salt and mixing it with water, the kneaded dough is broken into 10 smaller pieces of dough balls and they are adequate to make 10 pieces of flat chapati for a meal for my family.

Over in the kitchen drawer, we keep a rolling pin. This rolling pin is a huge wooden roller normally used to roll a thick pizza dough. I tried to use this rolling pin to roll over the chapati dough balls. Due to the incomparable size of the huge and heavy rolling pin with the tiny nugget dough balls, with my only one most gentle stroke, the heavy rolling pin flattened off the dough making the nugget dough balls completely out of shape. I do not get a circular piece of flattened dough sheet but instead, I had an out-of-shape chapati dough. I do improvise the use of this heavy and huge rolling pin with a smaller glass bottle.

I have some culinary lessons to learn before I can make a proper puffing chapati bread. I will keep trying to make chapati until one day, I make a puffy chapati.

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Posted by Quah Khian Hu 01:50 Archived in Malaysia

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