Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Besan-Soy masala roti (with spicy filling)

Besan, made from chickpeas, and Soy flours are rich in protein, fiber and other nutrients. Besan/Chickpeas flour is much better alternative to refined wheat flours. See for more info. Soy flour is another higher-protein, lower-glycemic alternative to refined wheat flour. For more information read: Combine these two flours together and they make very soft, healthy and filling rotis. Adding spices to these flours enhances the taste and flavor of these soft rotis making it a perfect combination of mouth watering and healthy food. 

I had a close friend, Sangeetha, who was also my class mate during Primary school. Her family used to make these rotis regularly and I loved it so much that they usually sent some extra rotis with her for lunch (whenever possible) just for me. When I got older, I learnt to make these rotis from Sangeetha's mum and these rotis are in fact one of my childhood favorites. I usually add a little bit of wholemeal flour to the dough, but, you can replace it with soy flour it if you want gluten-free rotis. The soft texture of these rotis is perfect for giving to young children and they are particularly tasty and appealing to them compared to wheat-based rotis. The roti is great on it's own with a little bit of mango chutney and plain yogurt (to balance out the spices if you want). But it also goes great with any curry of your choice. I have given these rotis, with plain yogurt, regularly to Anjalie since she was 6 months old. I used to skip the filling until she was 1 year old and then slowly started adding a little bit of the spices at a time. Now she enjoys them with the filling as much as the adults. Since she is not a big fan of chickpeas, otherwise, these rotis are a great way to get her to eat the nutritious peas. Another great reason for including these rotis as a regular meal is that the ingredients are all natural and does not use any processed/refined food. Moving on to the recipe...

You will need:

For the dough:
Besan/ Chickpeas Flour - 1 cup
Wholemeal wheat Flour - 1/4 cup
Soy flour - 1/2 cup
Oil - 2 tsp (you can also use ghee/butter)
Salt to taste
water to knead

For the filling: (you can adjust the amounts according to your taste)
Cumin Powder - 1 1/2 tsp
Coriander Powder - 1 tsp
Salt to taste
black pepper (ground) - 1 tsp
Amchur/ground mango powder - 1 tsp (available, here in the UK, in all Indian/Asian food shops as well as Amazon)
Red chilly powder - 1 tsp (for adults)
fresh green chilly & coriander finely chopped - 1 tsp each (for adults) 
Turmeric powder -1/2 tsp
oil/butter/ghee - 2 tbsps

In a small bowl mix all the ingredients for the filling and set aside. You can add more or less of any of the ingredients according to your taste. Cover and set aside for later use.

In a mixing bowl, sift together all the flours and salt.

Add the oil and water ( a little bit at a time) to knead a soft dough. Unlike wheat flour dough, this one will be a bit sticky and soft and will require less water. So take care when adding the water. Cover and set aside for 20 mins.

 Turn the dough on to a lightly floured surface and

 divide and roll the dough into 8 equal sized balls.

 Roll out each ball into a circle of 1/4 inch thickness. Spread the filling evenly on the circle.

Fold the circle in half

 and then to a quarter to form a triangle.

 Roll the triangle out to 1/2 inch thickness making sure to dust the surface and the rolling pin well with flour. Continue doing this for all of the ball and cover them with a tea towel.

Heat a tawa/griddle/skillet to medium heat and cook the rotis well on both sides

until golden brown on both sides.

Remove from the tawa and you can now spread ghee/butter/oil on the roti (optional) and serve it warm with Mango chutney and plain yogurt or your favorite curry.

Note: You can freeze these rotis in ziplock bags and warm them up at a later date on a tawa or microwave. But once defrosted, they will have to be served warm. Otherwise they will lose their softness a little.

You can also add kasuri methi/ dried fenugreek leaves or chopped baby spinach to the filling to give it a different flavor/variety.

Sending this out to Healthy Me Healthy Us event hosted by Priya. For more such healthy recipes check out her event page.


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