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Flat bread, sometimes called Indian chapatis, is an excellent alternative to bread found in the West. As a lover of East Indian cuisine, I use it for both dinner and lunches. It is great used as a bread to absorb stews and any dishes containing a lot of juices. I also use it as a wrap for sandwiches. It is incredibly easy and inexpensive to make, as well.
There are many variations to make this bread, but I have found this recipe the most effective and easiest. You may also consider adding a pinch of garlic or parsley to the ingredients for additional taste. I know this is not traditional, but it certainly adds a unique twist and taste to the flat bread. Another variation is to replace the water with milk. This seems to make the chapatis a little softer.
When I make flat bread, I make several of them and freeze them. They are certainly, like anything else, best served straight from the pan. They do, however, seem to freeze fairly well and are good for a few weeks.
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/3 cup water (or milk for a softer chapatis)
- pinch salt
- 1 1/2 tbsp vegetable oil
- In a mixing bowl, combine flour, water, salt and vegetable oil.
- Mix, using your hands, until a sticky dough forms. It should not stick to the side of the bowl but should be a little tacky in texture similar to that of silly putty.
- Allow the dough to sit, covered with a cloth, for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Using your hands, roll the dough out to a log shape. Cut it in 2 individual pieces.
- Flatten each piece into a round disk and roll out into a circle about 5 to 6 inches in diameter.
- Place the rolled out flat bread into a hot frying pan and cook on one side until it begins to bubble and turns slightly brown (about 1 minute). Lightly brush it with oil. Flip to the other side. Using an egg flipper, gently press down while rotating the bread. Brush with oil once more. Once this side is browned, flip once more while continuing to gently press and rotate.
- Remove the bread from the pan. Set it aside to cool slightly and serve with your favorite dish. Enjoy your flat bread.