Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Cheese Parathas

I needed a last-minute lunch before I had to hit the road to leave for our Thanksgiving road trip, so I settled on 2 cheese parathas. Quick, easy, tasty.

Parathas are very easy to put together and cook; you'll be done before you know it. It took me longer to get my camera set up and take these pictures than it did to make and cook the parathas from start to finish.

Parathas are an unleavened whole wheat Indian flatbread, often stuffed with some sort of spiced deliciousness. My favorites are the potato-stuffed parathas (Aloo Paratha) and cheese-filled parathas (Paneer Paratha), but you can find them stuffed with cooked, mashed cauliflower, and probably a variety of other ingredients.

When I came across this video from Manjula's Kitchen, I knew I wanted to try making the parathas her way. She made it look effortless and tasty. No doubt she has years of working that tiny rolling pin under her belt, and although I did a pretty good job of filling and rolling my parathas, they were not as thin and lovely as hers are.

Like so many other things, it just takes practice.

I wanted cheese parathas, but I didn't have paneer or plain yogurt, or even cilantro. I had to fudge the filling a bit to use what I had on hand, but I think that it worked out fine.  I also reduced the recipe quite a bit to make just 2 medium-sized parathas instead of 6 larger ones.

Cheese Parathas

Makes 2 medium parathas

  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/8 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon of salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon oil
  • approximately 3 tablespoons lukewarm water
  • 2 tablespoons green onion, minced
  • 1 heaping tablespoon sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cheese curds
  • salt
  • pinch of granulated garlic
  1. Sift together the salt, whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour in a bowl.
  2. Add the oil and mix briefly to moisten the flour, then pour in the water.
  3. Stir the mixture together with a fork until it forms a ball, then turn it out onto a floured surface and knead until it is smooth.
  4. Let rest for 10 minutes.
  5. In a small bowl, mix together the minced green onion, cheese curds, sour cream salt and granulated garlic until well combined.
  6. Divide the dough into two pieces and roll them out into a circle about 1/4 inch thick. Place half the filling in the center of the dough and then bring all the edges together and pinch them closed so that you have a ball of dough encasing the filling. Repeat with the second piece of dough and let them rest for 2 to 3 minutes.
  7. Carefully roll out the stuffed ball of dough to a circle about 4 inches in diameter - the first few times you do this, the filling may squeeze out a few holes. Don't worry too much about this, it will gtet better with practice.
  8. Lightly oil a griddle or a large skillet - I use my cast iron skillet or griddle and raise the heat to high. Place the rounds of bread on the hot griddle and cook until the edges begin to brown slightly, then flip them over. If the rounds puff up a bit as you're cooking, that is a very good thing.
  9. After about 3 minutes, flip them over again to check the color, they should be speckled golden brown. Cook for another 2 to 3 minutes and then place them on a plate lined with paper towel to absorb any excess oil if needed.
  10. Serve hot.

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