Indian bread isn’t all about naan bread and chapatis. If you haven’t heard of them before, stuffed paratha is an Indian flat bread made with a wholemeal dough and a spiced potato (aloo) filling. They have no raising agent and can be cooked in a frying pan.
They are traditionally a breakfast food throughout the Punjab and are popularly served with raita and even go in children’s and husbands’ lunch boxes. I love them on their own, with a big bowl of curry, with chutneys, pickles and dips, anyhow!
They also freeze very well. This recipe makes 6 breads so if you don’t need that many then you could halve the recipe or make too many so you have some in storage that you can pull out of the freezer for an easy and very tasty side. Once cooked, allow the unused breads to cool then divide each one with a layer of clingfilm and store in a ziplock bag in the freezer.
For the stuffing:
- 600g potatoes, peeled, par-boiled and grated
- 50g coriander leaves, finely chopped
- 1-2 fresh green or red chillies, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
For the parathas:
- 300g chapati flour (or 150g each wholemeal and plain flour), plus extra for dusting
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons melted butter or ghee
- For the stuffing, combine the grated potatoes, coriander, chilli, salt and spices and mix evenly. Set aside.
- To make the parathas, put the flour and salt into a large bowl and pour in the oil. Add 150-200ml of warm water to the flour gradually with your fingertips until you have a moderately soft and elastic dough. Knead well for five minutes. Shape the dough into a ball, cover with clingfilm and leave to rest for at least 30 minutes.
- Knead the dough briefly once more before forming into six equal balls. Lightly dust a work surface with flour and roll out one ball into an even 5 inch round. Take a sixth of the stuffing and place it centrally on the dough. Pull up the dough around the stuffing until it is completely covered. Twist off any excess dough sealing the potato in. Pat the ball to flatten into a round patty.
- Spread a little extra flour on the work surface and roll the patty out very gently and evenly to a 6-7 inch diameter. It doesn’t matter if the dough occasionally breaks; simply sprinkle a bit more flour over the split and roll over it gently.
- Set a frying pan over a medium-high heat and allow it to become hot. Place the paratha on one palm and flop it into the hot pan ensuring it lies flat and in full contact with the metal. Leave it to cook for a couple of minutes before flipping. Coat the hot surface with the melted butter or ghee using the back of a spoon. After another couple of minutes, flip again and coat the other side with melted butter or ghee. Repeat the flipping process until the paratha is beautifully browned all over and no uncooked patches of dough remain. Remove to a plate and keep warm in a low oven. Make all the parathas in this way.
This is such a light bread despite the double carbs as the dough is rolled so thinly and the potato is fluffy and flavourful. Paratha is awesome eaten steaming hot and crisp from the pan or you could store leftovers in the freezer as mentioned or in the fridge if you plan on using them in the next couple of days after making. Just reheat them in the pan over a medium heat.