This is a family favourite of ours and something the kids devour. It’s morish and warming, but simple and easy to eat, too.
2 medium sized potatos
1 cup of peas
Chapati dough (check out how to make chapti dough here)
Salt (to taste)
1 tsp paprika
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp cumin powder
Start by cooking your potatoes and peas. You need to have as little moisture as possible in your vegetables. If you have them too wet, then your paratha will fall apart when you come to create it. I like to put a little water in a bowl with my veges, cover it, and put it in the microwave – it takes about 8 mins to cook through (turning potatoes at least once during the cooking). You can also steam your veg (but can make your potatoes quite wet) or cook your potatoes in the oven, like a jacket potato – just don’t let your skin get too crispy! Microwave is definitely the quickest and easiest way to get them cooked and dry.
Cut your potatoes to check they’re cooked through – a knife should slide through with little resistance.
Cut your potatoes up and allow the water vapour to escape – this dries them out further. Note, I don’t peel my potatoes – the peel has heaps of fibre in it and is definitely good for you! If you want to peel your potatoes, then go for it :)
After a few minutes, add in all the spices.
Mash – then put in the fridge. You want your potato mix to be at least room temperature. Too hot and your paratha will fall apart.
Time to make the paratha – take a little atta dough and make a disk, then roll in to a large round. You want about double the dough than you would use to make one chapati. This is a thicker bread and you need more strength in the bread to keep the filling inside.
Once rolled, place 2 tablespoons of mixture in the centre and pat down. Don’t over fill your paratha or it will fall apart!
Now, this is where things get contraversial. I use the pleat method to create a paratha, but my mum makes triangular shaped parathas. I argue that my method is easier and is stronger – but I also don’t like to argue with my mum! Anyway, pull the edges of the paratha into the centre.
Once all the edges are pulled into the centre, do a slight twist and press it all down GENTLY! Generously flour the pleated side and turn over.
Now, with the smooth side facing up, generously flour some more.
This is where you find out if you’re about to eat paratha or bready potato mush – GENTLY roll your paratha, continuously adding more flour if it begins to stick. Don’t flip over – just put flour underneath, if needed.
If you’re lucky (and/or brilliant), it’ll look something like this. Thin bread with a central stuffing.
Put a little oil in a frying pan over a medium-high heat – I use sunflower oil as it crisps up the bread well.
Place your rolled paratha into the oil with the smooth side facing down. I put the smooth side down because the pleated side has more bread (as the edges are slightly folded over themselves) so the pleated side will be stronger. As such, the smooth side is more delicate so I put it into the pan first to seal it and keep the filling inside. When the paratha moves freely around the pan and it looks fried underneath, flip it over.
Pour a tablespoon (or more, depending on how bad you feel!) on the edge of the pan.
Roll the pan around to spread the oil – it will naturally move underneath the paratha. Cook until the underside is also cooked well.
Serve it up. If you like it hot, then serve it with a bit if Chilli Pickle or, a real favourite of mine, serve with some plain Greek yoghurt and a sprinkle of sugar. It’s also great as a decadent alternative to chapatis when eating a curry, but it may be too heavy. An unstuffed paratha (ie, a shallow fried chapati) is more common as a side dish to eat curries with. Enjoy!