Roti or Phulka (UrduØ±ÙÙ¹Û ; Hindi à¤°à¥à¤à¥; Dhivehi: ÞÞ®ÞÞ¨ ; Punjabi à¨°à©à¨à© ; Gujarati: àª°à«àªàª²à«; IPA: [ro:Êi]) in general, is defined as an unleavened flat bread in Urdu, Hindi, Punjabi, Pashto, Assamese, Indonesian, Malay, Bengali, and Somali languages. In Maharshtra and some parts of Gujarat, poli and bhakri are used to denote the same unleavened South Asian breads.
The following are some general and broad perceptions, stating the uses and definitions of the Roti bread in various regions:
Pakistan & India
Roti is a traditional bread in Pakistan and India, normally eaten with curries or cooked vegetables, it can be called a carrier for curries or cooked vegetables. It is made most often from wheat flour, cooked on a flat or slightly concave iron griddle called a tawa. It is similar to a tortilla in appearance. Like breads around the world, roti is a staple accompaniment to other foods, maybe spread with ghee (clarified butter).
Whole Wheat can be blended with other flours to make highly nutritious rotis. Below is the ratio in which one of the best recommended nutritious blended flours is mixed:
Whole Wheat Flour - 70%
Barley Flour - 15%
De-fatted Soybean Flour - 10%
Black Chickpea Flour - 5%
Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand
In Indonesia and Malaysia, the term encompasses all forms of bread including western-style bread as well as the traditional Punjabi breads.
In Thailand, "roti" refers to the maida parathaâknown in Malaysia as roti canai and in Singapore as roti prataâwhich is typically drizzled with condensed milk, rolled up, and eaten as a hot snack.
Roti also features prominently in the diet of many West Indian countries, especially Trinidad and Tobago and Guyana. West Indian roti are primarily made from wheat flour, baking powder,salt, and water and cooked on a tava. Certain rotis are also made with butter. There are several types of roti made in the West Indies.
Trinidad and Leeward Islands
* Sada Roti: This is a plain roti, made of white flour. Because it is the simplest roti to make, it is the most commonly consumed roti in Trinidad. It is a popular breakfast option in Trinidad, in combination with tomato choka, baigan choka (eggplant), and other vegetable dishes.
* Paratha Roti: A roti made with butter, usually ghee (a form of melted butter). It is cooked on a tava(a pan used in Indian cooking). Ghee is rubbed on both sides, then it is fried. This gives the roti a crisp outside. When it almost finished cooking, the cook begins to beat the roti while it is on the tawa, causing it to crumble. It is also called 'Buss-Up-Shut' in Trinidad.
* Dosti Roti: A roti where two layers are rolled out together and cooked on the tava. It is also rubbed with oil while cooking. It is called dosti roti because the word dosti means friendship in Hindi. This type of roti is eaten in Guyana with a special halva when a child is born.
* Dhalpuri: A roti with a stuffing of ground yellow split peas, cumin (geera), garlic, and pepper. The split peas are boiled until they are al dente and then ground in a mill. The cumin is toasted until black and also ground. The stuffing is pushed into the roti dough, and sealed. When rolled flat, the filling is distributed within the roti. It is cooked on the tava and rubbed with oil for ease of cooking. This is the most popular roti.
* Wrap Roti: A popular sandwich made by folding a curry stew inside of a Dhalpuri roti skin. Curry stew normally contains potatoes and a meat of some sort like chicken, goat, beef or shrimp. The wrap roti was developed in South Trinidad by Sakina Karamath, founder of Hummingbird Roti Shop.
* Piper Roti: A wrap roti that usually contains only potatoes and gravy, no meat. Piper roti got it's name by being given out for free to vagrants by roti shop owners. The piper roti was developed in South Trinidad by Sakina Karamath, founder of Hummingbird Roti Shop.
* Aloopuri: A roti similar to a Dhalpuri but with aloo (potato) substituted for the dhal. The aloo is boiled, milled and spices and seasonings are added before being sealed in the dough. This aloo filling is also used when making aloo pie or aloo choka.
* Fry Bake: Similar to making a Sada roti. After the dough is rolled, instead of cooking in on the tava as you would with the sada roti, the rolled dough is cut into 4 quarters and each piece is deep fried unitl golden. The dough usually rises in the oil so the finished product can be cut open and filled with various fillings before consumed. Fry Bake by definition can be considered a "puri", as compared to a "Dhal puri" which in reality is a type of roti.
* Bake: Made with butter, coconut milk and grated coconut meat. Sometimes referred to as "Creole Bake". The finished dough is placed in a round cake pan and baked until done.
How to make Roti:
Ingredients to make about 6:
2.5 cups chappati flour with 1 cup water at room temperature made into a dough
1 cup chappati flour in a large plate for dusting the dough while rolling it out
ghee for brushing the bread
Method to roll out the dough:
Prepare the desired amount of dough from the Basic Dough recipe. After resting for 2-2 1/2 hours, knead well. Divide the dough into peach-size balls. On a lightly floured surface, flatten one ball of dough with your hand. Using a rolling-pin, roll out the dough into a thin,round patty, about 5 inches in diameter. Roll from the center, turning patty several times to prevent sticking. Try to make the edges slightly thinner than the center. As you cook the chappati/roti, one could be rolling out the next, rather than shaping all of the chapatis at one time.
Method of cooking the chappati or roti:
Preheat a cast-iron tawa over medium heat. Place the rolled dough on the palm of one hand and flip it over on to the tawa. When the color changes on the top and bubbles appear, turn it over. When both sides are done, use kitchen tongs (chimta) to remove the chapati from the skillet.
Gas Stove: If you have a gas stove, hold the cooked chapati over a medium flame and it will puff up immediately. Turn quickly to flame-bake the other side. Do this several times, taking care that the edges are well cooked.
Electric Stove: If you have an electric stove, chapatis can be encouraged to puff by pressing them with a clean kitchen towel after the first turn on each side. Repeat the shaping and cooking process until all chapatis are cooked.
To keep the chapatis warm as they are cooked, place them in a towel-lined bowl and fold over the sides of the towel. Serve hot, either completely dry or topped with a small amount of ghee or butter.