Thursday, 21 March 2013

Kulcha roti

Kulcha rotis are popular flat breads from the North of India. It is very similar to Naan (another variety of flat Indian breads) in the soft texture. The only difference between Kulcha and Naan is that Kulcha is unleavened bread and the soft texture is achieved using baking soda, yogurt and baking powder. However, Naan is leavened bread which requires yeast. Thus Kulcha requires very little raising time compared to Naan. Although, in some parts of South Asia, even Kulcha are made with yeast. Another difference between Naan and Kulcha is that Kulcha often has spices, potatoes or other ingredients mixed into the dough (not used as a filling like parathas). Both Naan and Kulcha are traditionally baked in tandoori ovens. But I just make them on the stove top on a tawa/skillet. Naan and Kulcha are usually festive/ special occasion (wedding) food in South Asia and not especially healthy when compared to wholemeal breads like tandoori roti or phulka. But indulging in these once in a while is a great way to enjoy them while still maintaining a healthy lifestyle. I learnt to make Kulcha from my college friend who is from the North of India and I usually use potatoes, fresh green chillies, garlic paste/granules and coriander while mixing the dough (just like she used to!). It does remind me of those good old days, but, I do not make these often since they are calorie heavy and not as rich in fiber like phulka roti. But tonight I decided to indulge myself a little. Kulcha are usually served together with Chole/Chana Masala (spicy chickpeas curry). But Kulcha goes well with any curry of your choice.

You will need:
1/2 cup (I use low fat) plain yogurt
1/4 cup (scant) water (use more or less)
1 medium potato boiled, peeled and mashed (optional)
3 cups of plain/all purpose flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
2 fresh green chillies chopped fine (optional)
1/4 cup coriander leaves chopped coarsely (optional)
1 tsp garlic salt granules/garlic paste (optional)
Salt to taste
1 tsp cooking oil
Butter/ghee (optional)

I use bread machine to mix all the ingredients. It saves me great deal of time and effort during weekdays. I just place all the ingredients in the bread machine according to the machine instructions (liquids first and then flour, salt etc) and set it to basic dough setting. By the time I "get ready to go to work", the machine will be done with the kneading. You can hand knead instead if you have time or use electric mixer to knead as well.

Once the kneading is done you should have a smooth pliable dough. Place the dough in a mixing bowl. Add 1 tsp of oil and roll the dough in it to coat it well. Cover and let it rest for a minimum of 2 hrs. You can even leave the dough up to 12 hrs. I usually make the dough before going to work for preparing the kulcha for dinner time.

When ready, divide the dough into 8-10 balls and roll each one to a 1/2 inch thick circles/ovals on a floured surface.

 Heat a skillet to medium-low heat and cook each kulcha for 1 min each side. Increase heat to high and cook for another 30 secs on each side. The kulcha usually puffs up. Even if it does not puff up it will still be soft.

Apply butter/ghee on the surface (if using) immediately after removing from the skillet and serve warm with chole/chana masala or your favorite curry.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for visiting and taking the time and effort to leave a comment.