How to make Roti

Roti, also known as Chapati or Phulka, made of whole wheat flour, is an Indian flatbread. This staple is eaten with daal, vegetables, and gravy dishes.

How to make Roti

WHAT ARE ROTIS

Roti is a basic flatbread that’s made everyday in South Asian households. Roti, Phulka, Chapati, Rotli, depending on the region you’re from is called different names and sometimes there’s a slight variation of preparation.

How to make Roti

The thickness of Rotis depends on your personal preference, I always say that my rotis are an in between of Gujarati Rotlis (which are very thin) and Punjabi Rotis (which are on the thicker side). Rotis can be cooked directly on the pan or finished on an open flame, which I like to do. 

How to make Roti

Traditionally rotis are round in shape, this however comes with lots of practice. I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t matter whether your rotis are round, square, or the shape of an unrecognizable continent. The only thing that matters is if your rotis are soft and cooked evenly, which I’m going to help you with! 

How to make Roti

ROTI FLOUR

Whole Wheat or Whole wheat Multigrain flour found at your local south Asian supermarket works best. This flour is stone ground. Which results in a fine texture and distinct flavor profile. It’s much finer than the standard whole wheat flour you’d find at your regular grocer. I use Swad Multigrain Flour. I’ve also used Aashirwaad & Sujata brand and had good results. 

In this recipe I share how to make the roti atta (dough) with no special tools required, just a bowl. You can however knead your dough in a food processor or stand mixer. See below for that method:

How to make Roti How to make Roti

ROTI ATTA USING A STAND MIXER

  1. Add the flour and salt to the mixing bowl. Turn on the stand mixer with dough attachment on the lowest speed and start adding water, ¼ cup at a time. Stop to scrape the side of the bowl before adding more water. The dough should start coming together in about 3-4 minutes.
  2. Check the consistency of the dough, it should be soft and pliable to the point of when you poke it the impression stays.  
  3. If the dough feels firm, turn the mixer on and add a tablespoon of water at a time. If it feels too soft, add a tablespoon of flour. 
  4. Knead the dough for a minute on low speed and add the oil.
  5. Remove the mixing bowl from the stand and cover the dough with a damp kitchen towel and rest for 20 minutes. 

How to make Roti How to make Roti

ROTI MAKING TOOLS

  • Rolling pin (belan/velan)
  • Rolling board or clean surface (chakla)
  • Roti dough; atta
  • Dry atta; for dusting 
  • Tongs; optional

How to make Roti How to make Roti How to make Roti

SOFT ROTI TIPS

Prepare a soft dough

  • If the dough feels too tight- add more water, start by adding 1 teaspoon at a time. If the dough feels too wet/sticky- add more flour: again by 1 tablespoon at a time.

Rest the dough

  • After you knead the dough, cover it with a damp cloth or a damp paper towel and let it rest for 15-20 minutes.
  • The rest period allows the gluten to develop; resulting in a softer roti.

How to make Roti

Dusting the dough

Dusting the dough in between rolling helps you roll a more even disc. Brush the flour off when ready to cook. At first you may find yourself needing more of a dusting but as you gain practice you won’t need as much. Clean your pan in between rotis to make sure flour doesn’t build up on the pan.

Roll evenly

This is key when it comes to rotis that are soft and puff up.  While rolling, apply equal pressure on all sides. Of it helps, pick up the roti and keep rotating it as you role. Once you get the hang of it, the roti will automatically rotate as you roll.

How to make Roti

A hot tawa/pan

Ensuring your tawa is hot enough is key when making sure your roti cooks evenly.

How to make Roti
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Roti, also known as Chapati or Phulka, made of whole wheat flour, is an Indian flatbread. This staple is eaten with daal, vegetables, and gravy dishes.
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Indian
Serves: 12 rotis
Ingredients
  • 2 cups atta/ whole wheat flour; for the dough
  • ⅓ cup atta / whole wheat flour; for dusting
  • 2 teaspoons oil
  • ¾ cup + 2 tablespoon water; lukewarm 
  • ¼ teaspoon salt; optional
Method
KNEADING THE DOUGH
  1. Mix 2 cups of atta (roti flour) and salt together in a large mixing bowl. Add the water ¼ cup at a time and mix, you can use your hands, a spatula, or a wooden spoon for this step.
  2. Once you have a shaggy dough, knead the dough by hand. Knead with the knuckles of your finger, your palms, or both. Add the oil as the dough starts to come together. Knead until smooth and pliable, this should take 4-5 minutes.
  3. Cover with a damp cloth and allow the dough to rest for 15-20 minutes.
ROLL THE ROTIS
  1. Divide the dough into 12 equal portions, and make smooth round balls. Cover all dough balls with a damp towel.
  2. Put ¼ cup flour on a plate for dusting the dough while rolling.
  3. Take one dough ball at a time, and keep the remaining dough covered with a damp towel. Gently flatten the dough ball in your hand and then dip the dough ball in the plate of dry flour, shaking off the excess.
  4. With your rolling pin, start rolling from the center in an outward motion, rotating it about 45 degrees between each roll. Dust with flour in between to prevent sticking.
  5. Continue rolling until you flatten the dough into an even disc, about 8 inches in diameter. In the meantime, preheat a tawa / pan over medium-high heat.
COOKING ROTI
  1. Dust off any excess flour from the rolled roti and place flat in the hot tawa/pan. Cook until small air pockets start forming on the surface, about 30 seconds.
  2. Flip the roti, using your hands or tongs. Cook until you see air pockets develop on this side, about 30 seconds, then flip again.
  3. Using tongs, place the roti directly on the flame, allowing it to it puff up like a balloon. Flip it to cook it evenly. And remove from pan.
  4. If you don’t have a gas stove, using a flat spatula, gently press the roti while rotating it until it puffs up. Flip to cook it evenly.
SERVE + STORE
  1. Remove cooked roti and store in a roti container or  wrapped in aluminum foil. Repeat the process for other rotis. You can slather ghee or butter on your warm rotis before serving.
  2. To store, refrigerate rotis in an airtight container or airtight bag. You can also store the roti dough in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Enjoy,

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