and provides a basic recipe
What is a Paratha?
A paratha is a type of flatbread that is popular throughout the Indian subcontinent. It is a flaky bread, made with either all-purpose flour (maida) or whole wheat flour (atta). The dough is kneaded and allowed to rest before being rolled out into circles and then shallow-fried in oil or ghee. The result is a golden, flaky bread that is crispy on the outside, while maintaining a soft texture inside.
Parathas are often enjoyed with various accompaniments, such as yogurt, chutney, pickles, or even plain yogurt with a sprinkle of salt. They are a popular breakfast item, but can also be served for lunch or dinner. Varieties of paratha can be stuffed with ingredients such as potatoes, spinach, onions, and paneer. These variations are each known as ‘stuffed’ parathas.
Parathas are a very versatile dish, in that they can be created to suit any type of preference. They can be served plain or varied in product, texture and how much it is cooked. You can make a traditional butter paratha which will be a classic Indian paratha; a crispier paratha, or one that is softer.
What are the benefits of eating a Paratha?
The main benefit of eating a paratha is that they are a great source of carbohydrates, protein and fat, making them a healthy option for balanced meals. If you opt for a whole wheat paratha, it has more fibre and other vitamins and minerals than white flour parathas. The type of oil used to fry parathas also makes a difference. Ghee, a clarified butter, is commonly used in Indian cooking, and it is flavourful and healthier than other fats.
Parathas are nutrient-rich and make a great addition to any meal as they make a delicious side or snack. They serve as not only a great source of fuel for the day, but also aid in the digestion process. In addition, parathas do not need to be pre-soaked or boiled for long periods of time, so they can be prepared quickly. This makes them an ideal option for busy people who want a nutritious meal on the go.
Making a basic Paratha
Here is a simple and easy recipe for making a traditional paratha:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons ghee
- 1/2 cup water
- Oil for frying
1. In a large bowl or in a food processor, combine 2 cups of all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon of salt and 2 tablespoons of ghee.
2. Slowly add in 1/2 cup of water, kneading the dough until it is completely mixed and pliable.
3. Form the dough into small balls and roll out each ball with a rolling pin into a circle.
4. Heat a shallow frying pan or heavy skillet over medium heat and place a paratha on the pan.
5. Cook the paratha on each side for a few minutes until both sides are lightly golden and crisp.
6. Drizzle oil if necessary as you continue to cook the paratha. Flip the paratha and cook the other side as well.
7. Remove the paratha from the heat, and brush lightly with ghee.
8. Serve warm and enjoy!
These parathas can be enjoyed plain or stuffed with various ingredients. If you wish, you can also top the paratha with butter, ghee, or a yogurt and raita mix.
Parathas are an immensely versatile and popular dish throughout India. Whether it’s for breakfast, lunch or dinner, parathas make a wonderful meal that is both healthy and tasty. Plus, being so easy to make, anyone can whip up this delicious and nutritious flatbread in no time. So why not give it a try?
Paratha: The Journey from the Kitchen to the Table
Paratha, a flattened dough preparation, is a favorite breakfast dish in Indian cuisine and is highly popular in South Asia and its neighboring regions. To make parathas, the dough is made using a blend of flour and water, then rolled flat and cooked in a pan with oil or butter. Parathas can have a variety of ingredients added to them, such as vegetables, cheese, paneer, eggs, and meat for a savory version, or fruits, nuts, and sugar for a sweet version. There are different kinds of paratha dependent on the ingredients used and how they are cooked, but the fundamental element is the flattened dough.
Paratha as an Ancient Indian Staple
Parathas, historically known as parat (Hindi) or parantha (Bengali), have been a part of traditional Indian cuisine for centuries. Evidence suggests that parathas were first served in the kitchens of ancient India, where it was the staple form of sustenance for the people. According to Amrita Sondhi, author of The Everyday Healthy Vegetarian, the paratha has had a long and storied connection with Indian culinary traditions.
Parathas have also been a common dish in South Asian countries since around the 15th century. They became popular in the 16th century when Mughal emperors introduced them to the cuisine. In particular, emperors such as Akbar enjoyed the dish. He even staged paratha-making competitions among his courtiers. According to writer and historian James W. Mavor, these competitions made parathas even more popular in the region.
The Making of the Paratha
The key ingredient of a paratha is the flattened dough, also known as the atta or roti. For every paratha, a flour-and-water paste is made and then rolled into a thin layer spread on a flat surface with a rolling pin before being cooked.
Depending on the type of paratha being made, additional ingredients such as ghee (clarified butter) and oil may also be used. The wet ingredients, such as ghee or oil, should first be added to the flour in order to create the desired dough. Once all the ingredients are incorporated, the dough is shaped into a ball. Next, it is flattened using a rolling pin and made as thin as possible. The flattened dough is then set aside while the cook prepares the other ingredients, such as the vegetables or meat, to be added to the paratha.
After the additional ingredients have been prepared, they are added to the flattened dough before it is folded into a pocket or a triangle-shape. The dough is then rolled once again until it is thin enough for cooking. A pan is then heated, and the rolled and shaped paratha is placed onto it. Oil or ghee is typically added to the pan before the paratha is cooked.
The Cooking Process
In some cases, parathas are cooked on one side, flipped over, and then cooked on the other side. Other times, the parathas are cooked on both sides at the same time. Depending on the type of cooking process used, the paratha is cooked until it has a golden color and is crispy.
Cooking time is dependent on the thickness of the paratha dough and the type of ingredients added to it. For instance, if there are vegetables added, they could take longer to cook. Additionally, more oil or ghee may be added to the paratha during the cooking process, depending on the type and flavor of paratha required.
Serving the Paratha
After the paratha is cooked through and lightly crisped, it is ready to be served.
Traditionally, parathas can be served as-is, called prathas, or with a side like yogurt or pickles. The paratha can also be served wrapped in chapati or kulcha, which are thin, unleavened flatbread native to the Indian subcontinent or cut into pieces to make sandwiches.
A popular accompaniment for paratha is achar, a type of spicy pickle dish. Other accompaniments include chutney, which is a condiment made of fruit, vegetables, or herbs, and raita, a spiced yogurt-based dipping sauce similar to tzatziki.
The paratha is a beloved breakfast staple in India and is a part of many regional cuisines in South Asia. The journey of a paratha begins with a mixture of flour and water that is shaped into a ball, flattened, filled with ingredients, then shaped, and finally cooked in a pan. Parathas can be served with accompaniments like achar, chutney, and raita, making for a complete meal that has been enjoyed for centuries.
|Vitamin A||0.002 mg|
|Vitamin E||0.00135 grams|
|Vitamin K||0.0034 mg|
|Vitamin B1||0.11 mg|
|Vitamin B2||0.08 mg|
|Vitamin B3||0.00183 grams|
|Vitamin B4||0.0063 grams|
|Vitamin B5||0.47 mg|
|Vitamin B6||0.08 mg|
|Vitamin B9||0.01 mg|
Daily Value 1.3 g
Daily Value 0.018 g
Daily Value 0.4 g
Daily Value 1.25 g
Daily Value 4.7 g
Daily Value 2.3 g
Daily Value 0.011 g
Daily Value 0.9 mg
Daily Value 0.0023 g
Daily Value 0.055 mg
|Total Sugars||4.2 grams||
|Capric acid (10:0)||0.02 grams||
|Lauric acid (12:0)||0.05 grams||
|Myristic acid (14:0)||0.11 grams||
|Palmitic acid (16:0)||4.9 grams||
|Stearic acid (18:0)||0.64 grams||
|Arachidic acid (20:0)||0.05 grams||
|Behenic acid (22:0)||0.01 grams||
|Lignoceric acid (24:0)||0.02 grams||
|Total Saturated fatty acids:||5.8 g|
|Oleic acid (18:1)||3.79 grams||
|Palmitoleic acid (16:1)||0.02 grams||
|Gadoleic acid (20:1)||0.03 grams||
|Total Monounsaturated fatty acids:||3.84 g|
|Omega-6 Gamma-linolenic acid (18:3)||0.01 grams||
|Omega-3 Alpha-linolenic acid (18:3)||0.06 grams||
|Linolenic acid (18:3)||0.07 grams||
|Linoleic acid (18:2)||2.41 grams||
|Total Polyunsaturated fatty acids:||2.55 g|
|Trans-monoenoic fatty acids||0.02 grams||
|Total Trans fat:||0.02 g|