For Anush (one of our founders), growing up, big family breakfasts were never quite right if they didn’t include parathas. Flatbread stuffed with spiced potatoes, cauliflower, fresh fenugreek leaves, or even cheese, parathas were the easiest way to get everybody to wake up and enjoy each others company on the weekend.
Eaten on their own with a knob of butter, achaar, a dollop of dahi, or as Anush did, paired with anda bhurji (spicy, savoury scrambled eggs) or topped with a fried egg, starting the day with parathas felt like declaring to the universe - today is going to be a good day. And after a breakfast like that, how it could it not be!
Over the past year, there's been a serious paratha revival in our home. Parathas are our little act of defiance, our way to take back control and say "hey, it's going to be okay. You got this!" 💪🏽
While they're not an easy recipe to master, the steps are pretty straightforward. Once you get the hang of making them, there's typically no turning back. Practice makes perfect, and in this case, the good news is that they also freeze well - so if you're making some, make a lot!
Pictured here with some dahi, Mogambo Garlic Spread, and a sprinkle of guntur chili powder.
- 150g atta flour. If you can't find atta, use wholewheat flour
- 75ml water
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 tbsp ghee/butter
- 1 large potato
- 2 tbsp Smoki Seasoning Salt
- 2 tbsp Mogambo Spiced Garlic Spread (optional)
- Poke holes in a potato with a fork, and microwave for 3-4 minutes, or until cooked. Just push the fork into the potato to see if it's done, if it doesn’t come out easily, give it another minute. When it’s cooked, allow it to cool fully. You can boil it, but this takes more time, is more hassle, leads to more washing up, and is actually a worse result in this case as it adds moisture to the potato.
- Put the salt and flour in a bowl and mix. Pour in the water, and hand mix (you don’t want to develop gluten) until smooth, but no kneading is required. Cover and set aside for 30 minutes.
- While the dough rests, make the filling. Peel the potato, and gently break up with a fork. You want it crushed into small-ish pieces, but not mashed. If it looks a little coarse, those bigger pieces will break up when you mix it. This is a very long winded way of saying it’s okay to be lazy with this, less work is better.
- Mixed in the Smoki, and set aside.
- Heat a tava pan. If you don't have one, a heavy bottomed pan like a cast iron is perfect for this, over a medium-high heat.
- While it heats, divide your dough into 4 balls, and set 3 of them aside. To roll, dip in flour, and press with your hand until it’s around ½ an inch thick, then begin rolling with a rolling pin. Add flour if it’s sticking, and roll until its thin, around the thickness of a loonie (2mm to the non-Canadians reading this).
- Add ¼ of the filling, and gently spread out on the paratha, leaving around an inch around. Now, fold a 3rd of the paratha so the outside meets the centre, and continue on the other two 3rds, so it forms a triangle-ish shape. Dust with a little more flour, and gently roll again to around the thickness of a loonie.
- Melt your butter or ghee in a small bowl (in the microwave, approx. 10 seconds.)
- Place the dough in the pan dry, and cook for around 30 seconds, then flip. Brush the ghee onto the paratha, and flip after 30 seconds. Brush this side with butter, cook for another 30 seconds, flip again, cook for another 30 seconds. This sounds like a lot, but it only takes 2 minutes to cook each paratha. Put on a plate, cover with a towel to keep warm and moist.
- Repeat with the rest of the parathas, if you’re a paratha ninja you’ll be able to roll them out while a paratha is cooking.
Serving suggestions: These can be had with curry, but to us, simple is best. A couple spoons of dahi or natural yoghurt and some Mo’ garlic spread is genuinely one of the finest things you’ll eat this year.
Make it vegan: Use vegetable oil or coconut oil instead of the ghee/butter.