Chapati is the unleavened flat bread made of fine form of wheat flour the atta. The word chapati come from the Hindi word chapat (in Hindi means to slap). The traditional method of forming rounds of thin dough is by slapping the dough between the palms. With each slap, the round of dough is rotated. I don't think it needs any introduction. It is a common dish in Indian houses. But how to make soft chapatis? surely need explanation, am I right?
Chapatis can be made soft by various ways. Here I am explaining the method which I usually follow and of course , will discuss other methods also. Softness entirely depends on the water content and how much you knead the dough.
Step by step preparation of chapati
- Take wheat flour in a wide mouthed pan. Add salt and mix well.
- Now sprinkle water in small quantity and try to make a soft, non-sticky dough.
- Apply some oil and keep covered for 20 to 30 minutes. If you don't want to use oil, just cover the dough with a wet towel and keep aside.
- After 30 minutes, knead the dough with your hand by applying some pressure so that we get a very soft dough. You will experience the change, its colour will be slightly lighter compared to the unkneaded dough
- Make small lemon sized balls.
- Apply some flour on both side and flatten the balls with your hand.
- Then start rolling the dough ball into a flat round circle. Making the round rotis is not easy and with practice you will be able to roll them round. Flatten all the balls and keep aside.
- Turn on the gas stove and put the tawa /griddle to make it hot. the tawa/griddle has to be sufficiently hot to make soft chapatis. I generally make rotis on a medium flame. On low flame the rotis become hard. Then put rolled chapatis on the hot tawa or griddle.
- Within a few seconds, colour will be slightly darker and small bubbles will be formed.
- Then flip and press the bubbles softly with a clean cloth or spatula so that it puff up nicely.
- When both sides were cooked, remove from heat and apply some oil on both sides when the rotis are still hot..
- Serve with any spicy gravy.
My notes on how to prepare soft rotis/chapatis
- To get really soft chapatis, the trick lies in the kneading. The more you knead, the smoother the dough becomes and the smoother the dough is, the softer the Chapatis.
- The quantity of water may vary with the type of atta used, so adjust accordingly.
- Add water little by little while making the dough.While mixing the dough, do not pour water all at the first time and start mixing.
- While rolling, remember to roll the edges thinner than the center. This helps in puffing up of the chapati while cooking.
- Resting time is also important to make soft chapatis.
- Do not use too much flour when rolling – it makes the chapatis hard.