• Magazine Web Edition
  • October 1981


    Selections of South Indian Rice & Curry Vegetarian Cuisine


    Chapatis are a simple, flat, unleavened bread very common in South India. They often take the place of rice in a meal and are generally served with one or two vegetable curries and coconut sambal. Allow two, three or more per person.


    Recipe Makes 8

    1 cup wholewheat flour for dough

    1/2 cup water

    1. Place the flour in a bowl. Slowly add the water until no dry flour is left.

    2. Knead the dough on a board dusted with flour for five to seven minutes. Then let the dough rest for at least 30 minutes with a damp cloth covering it.

    3. When ready to roll out the chapatis, divide the dough into eight equal pieces. Take the first, pat it into a flat disc, dust it with flour and roll with a rolling pin. Several dustings and rollings are necessary to get a round six or eight inch chapati. They must be uniformly thin. They can be stacked on a plate with wax paper between to keep them from sticking together.

    4. Make the pan quite hot, without any oil and put one chapati in it. The best pan to use is a heavy cast iron one, although any pan will do.

    5. Cook about one minutes on one side. It is cooked on the first side when bubbles have appeared for a while on the top of it. The best implement for turning is a pair of tongs.

    6. After they are cooked, the chapatis should be set over an open flame for three seconds on each side. A pad of butter on each is good. Serve shortly after cooking.

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