Chapati

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Chapati is an excellent food article for semi-fasting days (fasting with usage of little food).  It is easy to digest, yet, it is always recommended to have with an equal amount of vegetable whether it be a palya, gojju, tovve or fruits to encourage digestion & easy bowel movement.  Chapati can be consumed at any meal time, by all constitutions at all seasons.

For yoga practitioners who tend to meditate for longer periods of time, this is an ideal food article.  Chapati is a recommended travel food as it keeps for longer periods.

There are different varieties of chapatis available; one which is made with no fat, one which is made with oil and and one which is made with ghee.  When made with ghee, chapati will support the physical and mental health to the fullest extent.  It is recommended to be consumed while warm as it becomes hardened when cool.  A chapati made with oil is also tasty and healthy and keeps its softness longer when it has cooled.

Chapati is traditionally made with Atta, a granular flour milled from soft Indian wheat that yields very tender chapatis.  If you are able to purchase this type of flour it is recommended.  Here we use a combination of 1/3 cup whole wheat & 2/3 cup white flour, resulting in a softer, less tough chapati.  Regular whole wheat flour (sifted to remove the larger bran particles) can also be used.  It may take a few attempts before finding the flours which suit best in your country of residence.

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Makes 5 chapati

Ingredients :

1 cup/130g flour (2/3 white & 1/3 whole wheat)

¼ tsp salt

2 Tblsp/30ml melted ghee

¼ cup/60ml hot water (or enough for a kneadable dough)

all purpose flour for rolling out

Preparation :

Into a large bowl, place the flour, and salt.  Whisk to combine.  Pour in the ghee and the hot water and stir with a spoon, slowly bringing the dry ingredients into the wet until mostly combined.  

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Using your hands, start kneading into the bowl, adding more water if needed, a teaspoon at a time, to make a tender dough.

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Work the dough until smooth and shining so that it does not stick to the hands – approximately 5 minutes.  Divide the dough into 5 equal portions and shape each into a ball and set aside, covered.   

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Take one ball, using your palms, flatten slightly into a disk, dip both sides with all purpose flour, use a rolling pin to roll it into a very thin, almost transparent round 7-inch circle.  Cover with a clean towel or plastic wrap, and repeat with the remaining balls.

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Preheat a cast iron/non stick skillet or tava over medium heat.  Once hot (it is important that it is hot), place the first chapati in the skillet and cook until bubbles start to appear on the surface, about a minute.  Flip and cook until tiny brown spots appear on the side facing the pan – about 30 seconds. 

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Flip twice more for 30 seconds on each side.  There will be 4 – 5 flips through the whole process. Stack, and cover the chapati as you continue to cook the remaining.  Serve as soon as all are cooked.

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When made on a regular basis, and becoming familiar with the process – chapatis become quick, easy and enjoyable to make.  Serve with a Sambar or Rasam, Carrot Palya or Green Bean Palya.

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