Paratha

Paratha

I’ve been fortunate enough to take two cycling holidays in India, one cycling through Kerela in Sothern India and the other through the Himalayan foothills in northern India. On both trips, we were treated to lots of beautiful street food, including many breads. Paratha is an amalgamation of the words parat and atta, which literally means layers of cooked dough, and these breads are flakey.

James Whetlor has a version of these in his book, Cooking on the Big Green Egg, probably the best Big Green Egg books to date. I cook them slightly differently from his suggested method, I feel the results are slightly better, but it’s marginal. I also don’t use the sugar he suggests, they don’t use sugar in India.

Cooking surfaces

BBQ Temperature

Ingredients

  • 500g plain flour, extra for dusting
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 300ml water
  • 40g/3 tbsp butter or ghee, melted
  • Chopped coriander to garnish

Equipment

Method

  • Setup your Egg for a direct cook at 280°C to 300°C with either your baking stone on top of the stainless grid or a cast-iron plancha (full or half-moon), I prefer now to use the plancha..
  • Put the flour and salt into a bowl.  Mix together the dry ingredients.
  • Add the water to flour mix to make a soft dough, then knead for a couple of minutes until smooth.
  • Cover and set aside for 5 minutes.
  • Cut the dough into 8 pieces, dust some flour on a dry surface, roll each piece of dough into a circle, about 15cm/6in in diameter, then brush with a little melted butter.
  • Roll each piece of dough into a tight cigar shape, with the buttered side inside, stretch lengthways, then coil up the cigar in a snail shape.
  • Press down with the palm of your hand and roll out again to a circle about 15cm/6in in diameter. The dough is going to be very thin, 1-2mm. 
  • Place on the hot cast iron plancha, close the lid and cook for 1-2 minutes until beginning to char in small patches, then flip over and cook for the same time on the other side.
  • Brush with a little butter (or do this just before serving) then place in a bowl and cover with a clean cloth while you repeat with the rest of the dough.
  • Garnish your paratha with some fresh coriander. 

These are great served with a curry such as our chicken tikka made with Parmjit’s tandoor chicken

 

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