Introduction: How to Make Indian Flatbread, Roti

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There are many different types and variations of Indian flatbreads: roti or chapati; naan; prautha; as well as stuffed versions of each type. This recipe is for three basic types which can be made at home. All you need is a griddle or large frying pan and a rolling pin. The dough is very simple and requires only wholewheat (or spelt) flour, water and a bit of olive oil.

A roti is a very simple round flatbread and is the easiest to make. Then there is the square one (prautha) which is made into a square shape by first rolling a circle, applying butter and spices and then folding it over 4 times to make a square before rolling it out one more time. The third one is a stuffed prautha (aloo prautha) which is very popular in Punjab. It is made by rolling out two smaller rotis and adding a filling in between them. The same dough is used to make all of them.

Yield: 6 flatbreads

Servings: 3 - 4

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Ready In: 25 minutes


2.5 to 3 cups whole wheat or spelt flour Water Olive oil

Step 1: Make Dough

Make dough in a medium bowl by adding some water and a drizzle of olive oil to the flour, and mixing it with your hands. Keep adding water in small amounts and mixing with your hands until it all comes together. Add more water as needed to be able to knead the dough until it has a smooth pliable texture (3 to 4 minutes). Set aside to allow the dough to breath and soften for 15 minutes. It can also be made ahead and set aside until you are ready to cook.

Step 2: ​Preheat Griddle

Preheat griddle or flat pan on medium high heat. Put about a cup of dry flour into a large plate or pie plate. Roll your fingers in this dry flour to avoid dough from sticking to hands. Take some dough and form into a small 2 inch ball with both hands. Roll it in the dry flour and flatten into a disk. Add some more dry flour on both sides and roll out into a 6 to 7 inch circle by rolling and turning over once or twice to get a nice circular shape.

Step 3: Cook for About One Minute

Place on preheated griddle. Cook for about one minute before flipping it over with a spatula. Cook the other side for about two minutes to allow it to blister a little. Then flip over again to have the blistered side on top. Apply gentle pressure with the spatula to encourage roti to rise. (The steam trapped inside the roti will help it to rise). Remove from stove and place on a plate lined with aluminum foil. Apply butter or oil to keep it soft. Cover to keep warm while making the remaining rotis.

Enjoy with your favourite curry or daal.

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