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Sunday, September 11, 2011

Spicy Cumin Rotis

These flavourful rotis are excellent for dipping into curries, dals and other soupy dishes. They're also a great bread for spreads and sandwiches. My father likes them for breakfast with a fried egg sandwiched between. The dough can be made up to a day in advance and fries up quickly.

Cumin Rotis

  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 cup atta flour*, plus extra for kneading and shaping
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon butter or ghee, plus additional for frying
  • 1/2 cup hot water


* If you do not have atta flour, substitute another finely-ground, whole-grain, hard wheat flour. I have also made these breads successfully with a multigrain mix.

Dry roast cumin seeds in a small frying pan until just fragrant (about 20 seconds).
Grind toasted cumin seeds with a mortar and pestle or in a coffee or spice grinder.
Mix together the flour, cumin, cayenne and salt.
Melt 1/2 tablespoon butter and incorporate into flour and spice mixture.
Add the hot water and mix well.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 5 minutes. If dough gets too sticky, sprinkle on a little additional flour and keep kneading.
Cover dough tightly and allow to rest for 30 minutes or up to 24 hours.

Lightly dust your hands with flour and divide dough ball into eight equal pieces.
Roll each piece into a ball between your palms.
Cumin Rotis 1

Flatten each ball into a disk and shape with your hands or a rolling pin into a disk about 3 inches across.
Cumin Rotis 2

Grease a frying pan with butter or ghee and heat until sizzling.
Lower heat to medium and add breads to pan in a single layer, working in batches if necessary.
Cumin Rotis 3

Fry for 10 seconds then flip breads to the second side.
Cook the second side for 1 to 2 minutes, until just beginning to brown in spots. Then flip again and cook the first side for a further minute or so until bread is cooked through.
Cumin Rotis 4

Remove breads from pan and wrap in a cotton cloth to blot excess oil and keep warm while you cook the remaining flatbreads.

Serve warm, spread with your favorite topping, or as a dipping bread to accompany a soupy dish. Or allow to cool to room temperature and use to make sandwiches.
Cumin Rotis with Cream Cheese & Cilantro

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