Aloo Paratha

Submitted by:
Pushpendra Kumar, Mainz, Germany
Spectroscopy

Image Source: Author

Ingredients

2 cups whole wheat flour
2 - 4 medium size boiled potatoes
1/4 or 1/2 teaspoons salt (according to test)
1/4 or 1/2 teaspoons garam masala powder
1/4 or 1/2 teaspoons red chilli powder or cayenne pepper or paprika (optional)
1/2 or 1 teaspoon amchur (dry mango powder)
1/2 or 1 teaspoon chopped green chillies
1 to 2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves

1. First one need to prepare the potato stuffing. Therefore, one need to cook or steam the potatoes using a pressure cooker or pan until boiled properly and then mashed very well. There should not be any tiny bits or chunks in the mashed potatoes because it will create trouble during rolling the paratha.

2. The above listed spices and herbs (except wheat flour) are added and mixed with the mashed potatoes. You can also add other spices e.g. carom seeds (ajwain) or ginger paste as you like.

3. When your potato stuffing is ready, you need to make the dough by taking the flour in another bowl or pan. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt (or as required), 1 tablespoon oil or ghee and some water (roughly 0.5 cup). Please do not add all of the water at once. Add the water in portions and mixing and kneading the dough into a smooth soft dough for 8 to 10 minutes. Add more water if required while kneading. Cover and keep the dough aside for 20 to 30 minutes. If dough becomes thin or sticky, add a few tablespoons of flour and mix it and knead the dough again. If the dough looks dry or is not soft, add a few tablespoons of water in parts and knead it again. Sometimes the dough looks sticky, but as you continue to knead, the flour absorbs the water and the stickiness goes away. Now your dough is ready to make a paratha.

4. Pinch a medium ball dough and roll between your palms and lightly flatten it. Dust with some flour and roll it to a circle of about 5 to 5.5 inches diameter. Place the potato stuffing in the center, keeping about 2 to 2.5 inches space from the sides. Take the edge and start pleating as well as bringing the pleats in the center. Join the pleats together. The pleats have to be joined well, as otherwise there will be gaps and the filling comes out while rolling. Press the joined top portion slightly downward from the center. Sprinkle some flour and roll this version of stuffed paratha to about the same size as that of a chapati or roti. In case if the filling comes out, then just take a small piece of dough and cover the gap. While rolling the dough, try to keep the same thickness throughout and avoiding the edges thick.

5. If dough is rolled nicely, put the rolled paratha on a hot tawa (skillet or griddle). Try to keep the flame to medium-high or high for a thick bottomed heavy tawa. Cooking at a low flame will harden the paratha, ideally paratha should be crisp as well as soft. When one side is cooked partly, flip the paratha to the other side using a spatula. There are some air pockets on this side and spread some ghee on this partly cooked side. Instead of ghee, oil (i.e. peanut oil or sunflower oil) can also be used. Flip again and see nice golden blisters on the second side. This time the side has been spread with ghee will be at the bottom and it has to be cooked more than the previous side. Spread some ghee on this side facing you. A well-made and well-roasted aloo paratha will always puff up during roasting. Flip again once or twice till both the sides are cooked properly. The crisp brown spots both the sides of the aloo paratha indicate it is cooked well. Since sometimes, the paratha edges are not cooked well, therefore, press the paratha edges with a spatula or spoon and keep it for a while. Use this method to make all the parathas.



Aloo paratha can be directly served from the tawa (skillet) straight into the serving plate with some extra butter on the side, or along with mango pickle or lemon pickle or dal makhani or some fresh curd (yogurt).

Background

Aloo Paratha literally means potato-stuffed flatbreads or flatbread stuffed with potatoes. It is easy to make and so delicious. It is the most loved recipe for Indian breakfast but also can be served in lunch and dinner. This is one of the most loved food at my place.
My mother used to make Aloo Paratha for breakfast and lunch 2-3 times in a week from my childhood. I really love it and I learnt it from my mother, when I started my college in my hometown.
Aloo Paratha is a bread dish originating from the Indian subcontinent. It is a popular breakfast originated from the Punjab region. It is usually served with butter, chutney, or Indian pickles in different parts of northern and western India.

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