The second entry under "Indian Bread Basket" theme this week is going to be these soft and yummy mooli parathas. Mooli is the Hindi word for radish while the parathas are the unleavened flat breads. The white colored one is the commonly available variety of radish in India and so that is what gets used in these parathas for the stuffing. Daikon is however a very good substitute for radish in this recipe and I regularly substitute it for radish in other recipes as well. Mooli paratha is one of the stuffed breads commonly prepared in north Indian kitchens and needs no special side dishes to go along with it. A spicy pickle and some good home made yogurt will do.
Preparing stuffed parathas like these need some experience since there is the possibility of the stuffing spilling out while rolling out the parathas, making it a frustrating experience, especially to a novice. Another fool proof method of preparing a stuffed paratha is rolling out 2 identical sized parathas, placing the stuffing on one paratha and covering it with the other one. Seal the edges and roll it again. Coming to the stuffing, it can be kept simple and raw as I have done. Or spices can be added according to one's preference and further the radish can be sauteed to make sure that it is dry to stuff. I use it raw and it doesn't make any difference with the final result.
Ingredients: (Make 8 parathas)
Oil / ghee to make parathas
For the outer layer dough:
1.5 cups wheat flour / atta + extra for dusting
1 - 2 tbsp oil (optional)
Salt to taste
For the stuffing:
1.5 to 2 cups peeled and grated radish / daikon
Salt to taste
2 tbsp. minced cilantro
2 finely minced green chili
Preparation of dough:
* Combine wheat flour, salt and oil in a mixing bowl. Add the radish water if using. Add water as much as needed to form a soft, pliable dough. Cover and leave to rest for about an hour.
Preparation of stuffing:
* Add salt and grated radish to a bowl or a colander and just mix to combine. Keep it aside for about 30 minutes to an hour.
* Working with a handful of mixture at a time, squeeze out the water as much as you can from the radish. This is done in order to have a dry stuffing. The radish water can be either discarded or used to prepare the roti dough.
* Add minced cilantro and chillies to the squeezed radish and mix well.
Stuffing the parathas:
* Divide the dough into 8 portions and shape them into balls by rolling between your palms. Work with one dough ball at a time while keeping the rest covered.
* Roll a dough ball into 3 - 4 inch disc and place about 1 - 2 tbsp. of filling, depending upon how comfortable you are with the rolling
part. Try with a little amount of stuffing initially, if you are a beginner. Place the stuffing at the center of the disc, leaving the edges free.
* Bring the edges together so that there are no gaps and the stuffing is inside intact.
* Press it into a disc taking care that there are no gaps anywhere so that the stuffing wouldn't spill out while rolling.
* Roll the disc carefully into a 5 to 6 inch thin circle, dusting with flour if necessary. Take care not to break it or let the filling coming out. Repeat the steps of paratha making with the remaining dough. One can roll out parathas and fry them simultaneously. A beginner may roll out 4- 5 parathas at once and then start the frying process. Remember to cover the other rolled out parathas.
Heat a shallow non stick pan or an iron griddle. Place the paratha at the center of the griddle and fry until there are brown spots on both sides, drizzling with oil / ghee in between. Click here for a picture tutorial on how to toast the parathas.
This goes to Blogging Marathon #49, under the theme of "Indian Bread Basket".