Roti or Chapati is a soft, tasty, and healthy Indian dish. This roti is nothing but Indian flatbread made with wheat flour and water. It is also called chapati, Phulka, rotli, or fulka in different parts of India. This roti is one of the staple food of the country which is typically served for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. And it is a perfect vegan-friendly dish that tastes great with any dal dishes, Veg Curry, like Korma, Paneer Tikka Masala, Kadala Curry, and Non-Veg sides for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
What is Roti?
Roti also called Chapati is an Indian flatbread prepared with whole wheat flour(atta), oil, salt, and water. The flour is combined with water to make a soft dough which is rolled into a circular disc and then cooked on a hot Tawa/griddle to achieve a soft roti.
This roti is one of the staple food of India and especially in the Northern part of the country. One could find this roti in most of the households, street food vendors, and restaurants as part of their everyday meal to serve.
Roti is most popular in the northern part of India but it is also consumed as one of the regular food, especially for breakfast and dinner in south India as well. While roti is cooked in Tawa and puffed up in open flame, chapatis are prepared flat in Tawa which also slightly puffs up during the cooking process.
Both the recipes are more or less the same and also taste similar whether it's roti or chapati. And mastering them will come with little practice and you will definitely fall in love making it again and again once you find a knack.
The main ingredients needed to prepare the roti are wheat flour, oil, salt, and water. Apart from that, you will also need a rolling board and pin to make a circular shape roti.
How to knead Roti Dough?
Kneading the dough is one of the most important parts of achieving a soft and puffed roti. So let us see how to knead the dough for roti in this section and I hope it will help you to prepare soft roti without any hassle.
First in a bowl, add 2 cups of wheat flour, 1 tsp oil, ½ tsp salt and mix well with your hands. Then add ½ cup of water to the dry flour mixture and start combining with your hands. Gradually, pour the remaining ¼ cup of water and combine again until all the flour comes together. If your dough is still hard, you could feel free to add 1 to 2 tsp of water. At the same time, if the dough is sticky then add some dry flour and continue combining.
Once the dough comes together, it's time to knead. Yes, start kneading the dough with moderate pressure using the knuckles of the fingers. Continue kneading until you get a soft and flexible dough and it may take up to 5 to 7 minutes to achieve this stage. The consistency of the dough should be smooth and should leave an impression when we press it with our fingers.
That's it, now our dough for roti or chapati is ready to roll. But before rolling them, let the dough rest for at least 15 minutes which makes it softer and the rolling process easier. So make sure to cover it with a lid and rest it for the suggested time mentioned above.
How to make Roti?
The roti recipe is one of the quick and healthy dishes. The recipe that I have shared here yields 6 to 7 moderate size Chapati or roti. So let us see how to make this Indian flatbread with easy step-by-step instructions.
To give an overall idea, the following are the steps involved in making this roti recipe.
- Kneading the dough( discussed in the above section)
- Rolling the dough
- Cooking the roti dough on tawa
Rolling the Roti dough
Rolling the dough evenly is another important factor to achieve a soft and puffed roti. First, we have to divide the resting dough into 6 equal parts(the dough we prepared in the previous step). Roll each part into smooth crackless balls using your palms. Making smooth round balls will definitely help you to achieve a good soft roti.
After making them round balls, take one ball and dust it with dry flour from all the sides, and press in the middle to make it flat. To prepare roti, now using the rolling pin, start from the middle and roll evenly from all the sides of the dough. Make sure not to apply pressure instead roll it gently and evenly. To give you an idea, the roti shape should be approximately 6 inches in diameter. Rolling the dough to perfect shape may take little time and definitely, you could master it with practice.
To prepare Chapati, take one round ball and dust and flatten them in the middle the same way that we did for roti. Now roll them from the middle and make a small disc. After making a small disc, spread 1 tsp of oil and fold it into a triangular shape. Dust the triangular dough again with dry flour if it is sticky and spread it evenly from all the sides. This type of rolling gives a nice layered soft chapati. Now it is ready for you to cook on the Tawa/griddle.
Cooking the Roti dough on tawa
To prepare roti, place the rolled dough in a hot Tawa. Now cook it until it starts to bubble on the top side. Check whether you can see brown spots at the bottom side using the tong. Once you see the brown spots, remove the roti from the Tawa and place the uncooked side immediately facing down on an open flame. Now the roti eventually puffs up and you can remove it from the fire.
Since I do not have an open flame stove, I tried using it with a hot plate stove with a Phulka stand placed on it. And to my surprise, it gave a good soft and puffed Phulka too. So if you are like me, who does not have access to a flame stove, then you could feel free to try this method. You could also puff the roti in Tawa itself without switching them into a pulka stand. Yes, just flip the other side once you see the brown spots on the bottom of the dough and press it gently with cotton cloth all over and the roti will gradually puff up.
To make chapati, place the triangular shape rolled dough on the Tawa and cook it until brown spots appear on both sides of the dough. This Chapathi also slightly puffs and you could also smear some oil on both sides while it is cooking.
This roti or Chapati is a soft, delicious, and healthy dish that you can enjoy for any meal. And I hope you will try and relish this recipe with your family and loved ones.
Each step involved in making this roti and Chapati is important and they all really compliment each other in achieving the best results out of it. So make sure to follow all key factors to achieve a super soft roti or chapati.
Especially, kneading the dough to smooth consistency is the leading factor that eases the other parts like rolling and cooking it on Tawa. Usually, the hard dough does not result in soft chapati or roti. So, always knead with the knuckles of your fingers to achieve a smooth and soft dough.
It is also important to rest the dough before rolling it which makes the rolling process easier. Another key point to note is the dough should be spread evenly, neither too thick nor too thin. If the dough sticks in between your rolling, feel free to sprinkle some dry flour and start rolling again.
Finally, make sure the Tawa is heated well on a medium setting before placing the rolled dough on it. If the Tawa is not hot, then the roti takes more time to cook which eventually results in a hard chapati/phulka. Personally, I did the same mistake when I used to learn cooking in my early days. Believe me, cooking is an art and it will make you perfect the more you practice. And definitely, this roti recipe is one among them and we can fine-tune ourselves from our mistakes.
Roti is one of the healthiest and fiber-rich dishes that has a lot of variations. Even though the process of making the dough is similar, the techniques of cooking them slightly vary from region to region.
For instance, in North India people cook the roti/Phulka partially in Tawa first and then puff them up in the open flame. On the other hand, some people prefer to cook the whole roti in tawa itself. In some parts of India, people also prefer to spread ghee instead of oil on cooked roti. It gives a rich flavor and taste to the dish.
There is also another variation where people spread some oil in the rolled dough which is then folded into a triangle shape and then rolled again evenly to make layered chapatis. Personally, I make this version of chapati at least three to four times a week for dinner. And it tastes great with the vegetable curries like chole, Aloo Gobi, Meal Maker Curry, and Gutti Vankaya Curry.
There are also different varieties of roti prepared in India using ingredients like plain flour, jowar, Ragi(finger millet), rice flour, and so on. All those roti are healthy and of course, they are delicious to include in your everyday meal.
This Indian roti tastes delicious when it is served immediately. But you can cover it with a cotton cloth in a closed container for later use. This helps to retain its softness and freshness. And you could reheat it in tawa or the microwave before you plan to serve them.
If you are planning to pack it for a lunch box, roll it with a paper towel and then roll again with aluminum foil. This helps the roti to stay fresh and soft for long hours. You could also refrigerate the leftover roti in a closed airtight container for a day. And make sure to sprinkle some water while reheating the chapati/roti which helps to regain the lost moisture and softness.
This roti tastes great with any veg or nonveg curries. To make a vegetarian platter, serve it with veg curry. For a non-vegetarian feast meal, combine it with non-veg curry. This also tastes great with simple Indian Vegetable Korma, Egg Curry and it can be perfect for a light breakfast or dinner meal.
You could also find similar recipes below and more at Breakfast Recipes.
Looking for different breakfast recipes to cook for your busy mornings? Then you could also check this collection of Indian Vegetarian Breakfast Recipes to enjoy with your family and loved ones.
Roti recipe video
I have also shared a detailed video of this Indian roti recipe that I believe will help you to make a soft roti easily at home. For a quick reference, you could also find this recipe in story format.
- 2 cup Wheat Flour
- ¾ cup Water
- 2 tbsp Oil
- Salt, as needed
To prepare/knead the dough
- In a deep bottom bowl, add wheat flour(atta), oil, salt, and mix everything well
- Now pour half a cup of water and gradually start to combine the flour with your hands
- Add the remaining quarter cup of water and continue mixing with hands( i used only ¾ cup but it may vary based on the flour and the brand)
- Once the flour is combined, start kneading the dough with your knuckles with moderate pressure for at least 5 to 7 minutes or until it turns soft and flexible
- Now spread 1 tsp oil on top of the dough and close the bowl with the lid and rest for 15 minutes
To roll the Roti/Chapathi Dough
- Now open the lid and the roti dough should be turned super soft. Give it a final knead for 2 to 3 minutes
- Divide the dough into 6 equal parts and roll each into a smooth circular ball without any cracks
- Dust the ball with dry flour on all the sides and gently flatten it in the middle
- Start rolling it with the help of a rolling pin from the middle of the dough and spread evenly in a circular motion to form a 5 to 6-inch diameter roti/phulka(if your dough starts to stick in between rolling feel free to dust with dry flour)
- For Chapathi, roll the dough from the middle and apply 1 tsp of oil and fold into a triangular shape and spread evenly using a rolling pin
To cook the Roti in Tawa/griddle
- In a tawa/griddle with a medium heat pan, place the rolled roti dough and cook until it starts to bubble up. Make sure you see light brown spots at the bottom side of the roti using a tong
- Now remove the roti from the tawa and transfer it to to the phulka stand with the top side facing the bottom (the side which is not cooked yet) and be sure to keep the heat in a medium
- The roti will gradually puff up and remove from heat. You could also cook on another side for an even crispier top. Now the roti is ready for you to taste and enjoy
- For Chapathi, place the rolled triangular dough in tawa and cook it evenly on both sides until brown spots are seen. Now the chapathi is ready for you to taste and enjoy
- Serve this delicious soft roti/phulka with stir-fried vegetables, veg kurma, or nonveg sides of your choice
- Always make sure to knead the dough to soft non-sticky consistency. If we press with a finger the impression should fall on the dough
- Always make sure to add water gradually while combining the flour which will help to avoid a non-sticky dough
- If in case the water gone too much and your dough turned sticky, feel free to add some dry flour and start kneading again to make it soft and pliable
- If your dough turned hard then add little water to make it smooth
- Roll the dough into a uniform circular shape that is neither too thick nor too thin
- Always make sure the tawa/griddle is hot enough before placing the rolled roti dough which helps to achieve a soft roti/chapathi
- Serve this tasty and healthy chapathi/roti with veg korma, paneer curry, salna chicken curry, or similar side dishes
Roti or Phulka is a soft Indian flatbread made with wheat flour, water, salt, and oil. The roti is usually prepared with a dough that is rolled into a circular shape and then cooked on a Tawa until it puffs up. It is also called chapati, roti, pulka in different parts of India. It is one of the staple food and it is usually served for breakfast, lunch, dinner with any veg curries, nonveg curries of individual choice.
The process of making roti/Chapathi usually includes kneading the dough, rolling the dough, and cooking the rolled dough in hot Tawa until it is puff to a soft Chapathi or roti. And I have explained the process in detail within this post. Please do check.
Roti/Chapathi does not puff up due to one or more reasons. It depends on kneading the dough, rolling it evenly, and cooking it in perfect heat. Even if one or the other steps are gone wrong, then that results in a hard, un puffed, or overcooked roti/chapati.
Usually, 2: ¾ can be the flour-water ratio for making Chapathi/roti. But it again depends on the brand and type of flour that we are using. So it is best to start adding water gradually while combining the dough and explore for the right ratio.
Yes, we can puff the roti without an open flame in Tawa or on an induction stove with a pulka stand placed on it. For puffing up in Tawa, just gently press the roti with a cotton cloth on both sides.
I really hope you enjoyed the recipe that I have shared here and I would love to hear from you on how it turned out for you. Please let me know.
If you have any other questions, feel free to post them in the comment section below and I will try to get back to you as soon as possible.
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