Masala Paratha / Spicy Flatbread

Masala Paratha

These past couple of weeks, it’s been hellishly hot where I live. I’ve basically refused to go anywhere that doesn’t have air-conditioning and as a result, have been cooped up in my bedroom for what feels like a century. In the middle of all this, every morning I’m tormented by the question of what to make for breakfast – something light and fresh and that needs no preparation. Of course, I almost always wound up making sandwiches or eating a ton of fresh fruit & veggies.

Not surprisingly, Hubs & I got supremely tired of bread. And I don’t want to look at another cucumber for at least a week. Thankfully, it had rained just the previous night and the weather wasn’t blistering and I didn’t break into a sweat just taking the trash out. Win! Somewhere when I was deciding if I should get out of bed or not, the idea of a spicy paratha without the hassle of making & filling a stuffing popped into my head and I was sold. Hubs had never tasted something like that, so of course, I had to make it!

Masala Paratha Process

These are great if you’re looking for something to up the ante on the plain paratha but don’t want to get into the whole dizzying world of fillings etc. Roll it out, toss it on the skillet, flip, flip, flip and done! They are a bit cumbersome because you have to stand over a skillet, frying these one by one so yes, don’t attempt these on a hot, humid day or you might just raze the next person you see to the ground. On a cool, rainy day or a wintry morning? These are PERFECT!

MASALA PARATHA

Prep Time: 15 mins | Cook Time: 10 mins | Makes 6 parathas

  • For the dough, mix 2 cups of whole wheat flour, 1 tsp red chilli powder, 1 tsp coriander powder, ½ tsp garam masala, ½ tsp cumin seeds (jeera), ½ tsp carom seeds (ajwain), 2 tbsp oil or ghee & salt to taste. Knead this into a soft dough with enough water (usually no more than 200ml but go by your gut!). Cover with a moist cloth & allow this to rest for 10 mins.
  • Once the dough has rested, knead it again for a few seconds and divide it into 6 equal portions (we call these loya at our home!). Meanwhile, heat up your skillet to cook the parathas.
  • To roll out the paratha, dust a loya in flour and roll it out into a disc of ~6”. Brush with oil or ghee and fold it toward yourself making a semi-circle. Now, fold one corner onto another making a quarter-circle. Dust this with flour and roll into a triangle-shaped flatbread, about 2-3mm thick.
  • Transfer the rolled out paratha onto the skillet. Once tiny bubbles start appearing on the surface, flip it and brush with a thin film of ghee. After 5-10 seconds, depending on how hot your skillet is, flip it again and brush some ghee over it. Press down with a spatula so the flatbread is evenly cooked. Lift up a corner to check if it’s golden and flip it again to cook the other side.
  • Serve hot with spiced or plain yoghurt & some coriander chutney

ADAPTATIONS & HACKS

  • For a kick of freshness, add minced mint leaves to the dough. I didn’t have any on hand, so it’s not in this recipe!
  • This recipe makes a medium-flaky flatbread. For more flakiness, add a couple tbsp more oil or ghee to the dough
  • This flatbread also tastes fantastic with a sweet tamarind chutney or a sweet mango pickle!
  • Use this paratha as a base for “frankie” rolls or wraps. Off the top of my head, something like a coleslaw made with hung curd, shredded cabbage & carrots and seasoned with only salt  & pepper would be amazing!
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