Plain Paratha

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Plain Paratha Recipe

This simple plain paratha recipe will show you how to make Indian Paratha flatbread on the stovetop. This simple paratha dough recipe creates a paratha with all purpose flour, or plain flour, and uses an egg in the recipe.

plain paratha
Flaky paratha

What are parathas?

Parathas  are a very common type of unleavened flatbread used in Indian cuisine. The paratha has many different names such as: prontha, parontay, porota, palate, forota, parantha, parauntha to name but a few, depending on where you are.

There are many different varieties and are normally based on whole wheat flour. There are plain versions and stuffed paratha versions and they can be eaten as a snack or accompaniment to a meal. Or even for breakfast. 

plain parathas
Plain paratha

It is great to use a paratha to pick up food or to dip in raita or pickle for example. This is one of my favourite Indian recipes.

Parathas may be served up in circular, triangular or even square format.

Paratha vs Naan bread 

Parathas are different to naan bread in several ways. Firstly parathas are cooked on a tawa or tava (a flat frying pan) whereas a naan is cooked in a tandoori oven.

frying in skillet
Frying paratha in a skillet

 

Also, parathas are often folded several times a bit like puff pastry to give a flaky bread. The folding is done so as to produce rings in the paratha.

In comparison, you may find the naan a bit thicker as it is often made with yoghurt and yeast in the dough. They will both also behave differently if you decide to stuff them, because of the method of cooking.

parathas recipe
Flaky paratha bread

 

The cooking of a paratha does use a fair amount of ghee, I must say, so perhaps it is not as healthy as some other Indian flatbread like roti or chapatis.

But both flatbreads are delicious in their own right and really both should be tried. Serve them both up with your main course and see which goes first!

paratha with curry

Folding a paratha

There are several ways to fold a paratha to create a flatbread with lots of layers. I have tried a couple of them.

Luckily your folding technique does not have to be perfect to produce a tasty paratha (as proven by my pictures below!)

This is method 1 as described in the recipe card below:

rectangular dough
Roll into a rectangle brush with ghee and sprinkle with flour

 

folding paratha
Fold like a concertina’s bellows

 

best paratha recipe
Roll into a circle before rolling flat

 

This is method 2.

circular dough
Start with a circle…..well sort of

 

triangular dough
Fold into a cone shape

 

how to make layered paratha
Squash before rolling flat

Apologies for the poor photos but my fingers were covered in Ghee and my folding technique needs some working on!

I hope you get the idea.

We have found this paratha recipe to be a great accompaniment to my authentic Indian chicken curry and will be making it more often in the future as it is so easy to make, and quicker than my naan recipe.

I hope you have fun trying this and please let me know how you get on in the comments section below!

Hope to make Plain Paratha

Plain Paratha

plain paratha

This plain paratha recipe makes 6 fairly large sized plain parathas which will melt in your mouth. The perfect accompaniment to an Indian curry.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 450g plain flour (all purpose flour)
  • 1,5 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 230ml water
  • Melted Ghee to baste and extra flour to sprinkle

Instructions

  1. Mix ingredients together well until you have a nice springy dough. Knead for a bit on a floured surface and form into a ball.
  2. Cover in a bowl or banneton and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
  3. Remove from the bowl and cut dough into 6 equal-sized pieces, and roll them into dough balls.

There are various ways to create the spiral form in the paratha. Here are two:

Folding Method 1

  1. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough ball into a rectangular shape. Brush the top with some melted ghee and flour.
  2. Then fold one of the long edges over itself continually in widths of about 15mm so you produce strip of dough like the shape of an accordion's bellows. Then roll this strip into a circle with a rolling pin. (See the pictures in blog post).
  3. Then roll this circle flat.

Folding Method 2

  1. Roll a dough ball into a circle. Brush with melted ghee and sprinkle with flour. Then make a cut from the centre to the outside.
  2. Begin then to fold the dough over on itself until you have a cone-shaped triangular piece of dough.
  3. Put the dough on its end and squash it. Then roll it out into a circle with a rolling pin.

Cooking

  1. Heat up a flat cast iron skillet to a high heat. Then brush the first dough circle with melted ghee and place in the skillet until brown spots appear. Baste the top with ghee and then turn over and cook the other side.
  2. The dough should brown in places during the cooking process.
  3. Repeat for the remaining dough balls.

Notes

Serve up immediately when hot.

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