Chapati in foreign terms means bread, the origin of chapati has different stories to tell from different regions. This makes the history of chapati quite vague, but the history is quite old. Interrogated on chapati some say they were founded in Eastern Africa where the others say it is a gift of Egyptian Indus valley civilization. Chapatis has also seen a mention in the age-old Sanskrit texts about 6000 years ago. Evidences say chapati were a favorite of King Akbar during his regime. The 6000 years old Sanskrit text evidence is used in many places to presume that chapatis has its origin in India.
Chapati is a type of unleavened Indian bread, flattened in shape and serves as an ideal accompaniment to a variety of Indian dishes – including the popular curries. However, you can devour dals, chutneys, dry sabzis with chapatis as well.
Chapatis are, also, known by varied names: roti, phulka, safati, roshi, shabaati, among others. Also, note that chapati is a kind of roti.
Typically, whole wheat flour (or atta) is used to dole out chapatis. Though, other types of flour are used to make several different types of chapatis too.
Chapatis are known to originate from the Indian continent. And over the years, they have become the staple food of people from Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal, Caribbean, and Nepal. Moreover, chapati calories are low and serve as an ideal diet for the weight-conscious groups.
The Conventional Way of Preparing Chapatis
When making chapatis, the first step is to prepare the dough with flour and water. A parat (a type of mixing utensil) is used for kneading the dough. Some people prefer adding salt and oil to the dough as well, depending on their preferences and cultural backgrounds.
Now, if you want to learn how to make soft chapati, then you must keep aside the dough after preparation for 15-20 minutes. By doing so, the dough develops gluten
The next step is to divide the dough into balls of equal size. Follow by rolling the chapatis using a rolling pin (also known as belan or velan) and circular rolling board (or chakla). Also, you need to dip the discs in flour when you are rolling the dough balls into flat discs. Even so, to prepare chapatis, you can use a chapati maker – a handy appliance that dishes out several chapatis within a short time span.
Subsequently, the rolled dough balls have to be cooked. For the same, you should preheat a dry Tawa, after which the rolled dough has to be cooked from both sides. Some people partially cook chapatis on a skillet and later, on a direct gas flame – to puff them up. The hot air stream rapidly cooks the chapati from the inside. Though, chapatis can also be puffed up by using only a Tawa. Cooked chapatis can be topped with oil or butter before serving too.
You can also read:- PARATHA: RICH IN TASTE AND INGREDIENTS
Varied Types of Chapatis
Chapathi is available in various forms, depending on the type of grain and other ingredients that are used to prepare the dough. The chapati variants are discussed below.
Thalipeeth: Contains rice, wheat, roasted tapioca, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, and Rajgira
Beetroot Chapati: Made with the colourful and healthy vegetable, beetroot
Ragi Roti: Prepared with onions and other vegetables
Jolada Chapati: The dough of Jolada chapatis is made using jowar (meaning sorghum bread)
Sheermal: Sheermals contain saffron and are a Hyderabadi specialty
Taftan: Taftans are readied in clay ovens and contain ingredients like milk, eggs, and yogurt
Pitha: Pithas originate from the north-eastern part of India and are composed of wheat flour or rice flour
Boli: Channa dal is used to prepare Boil which is a kind of Chapati and popularly relished with payasam in South India
Bhakri: The primary ingredient in Bhakri is wheat flour. This chapati is the staple food in Gujarat and available in both soft and hard varieties
Puran Poli: Sweet in taste and a famous Maharashtrian recipe sums up the description of Puran Poli
Plain Flour Chapatis: Chapatis can be prepared with plain flour (or maida or all-purpose flour) too. Also, to make your chapatis healthier, you can opt to mix whole wheat flour or wheat flour along with maida.
Layered Chapatis: You can prepare chapatis in layers as well. They can either be one-layered or two-layered or three-layered (or triangular in shape) or four-layered (or squared)
Gram Flour Chapatis: To make gram flour chapatis, replace wheat flour with gram flour. Gram flour chapatis are favored for they rate high in protein content.
Gluten-free Chapatis: You can prepare gluten-free chapatis by using millet flour. People opt for gluten-free chapatis as they are believed to be healthier.
Paneer Chapatis: As part of your preparation for paneer chapatis, you must add grated paneer to the dough
Radish or Mooli Chapati: To ready mooli paratha, you must add grated radish and turmeric powder to the chapati dough.
Aloo Chapati: Aloo chapatis are prepared by stuffing boiled potatoes and onions; they are devoured with pickle or curd
Gobi Chapati: Chapatis that contain the cauliflower vegetable are known as gobi chapati
Vegetable-stuffed Chapati: in many households, chapatis are prepared using fenugreek, peas, potato, carrots, among others. The vegetables are mashed and lightly sautéed in a spiced gravy. These types of chapatis are served in a rolled fashion.
Chapati and Indian Dishes
Chapatis taste delicious with Indian dishes. Also, both vegetarian and non-vegetarian fare can be relished with chapatis. Some common ingredients that are used to prepare Indian cooked foods include onions, tomatoes, green chillies, herbs, spices, ginger, garlic, and vegetables.
In Indian vegetarian chapati dishes, some common vegetables that are added include okra or ladyfinger, cauliflower, beans, potatoes, capsicum, and peas. Additionally, paneer dishes taste delectable as a chapati side dish.
Among dals to accompany chapatis, you can choose between masoor dal, toor dal, green moong dal, and yellow moong dal.
In non-vegetarian fare, people relish lamb, chicken and fish recipes with chapati as a condiment.
Additionally, in India, people use a pressure cooker to cook up dishes. A pressure cooker is handy because foods can be prepared in them quickly. More so, the nutrients are preserved when cooking in a pressure cooker. In turn, your foods are more nutritious if cooked in pressure cookers.
Other Ways of Preparing Chapati
Traditionally, chapatis are roasted on the gas using a flat or griddle pan, as seen earlier. However, with the advancement of technology, you can prepare chapatis using newer appliances too. Microwave, microwave oven, roti maker, electric stove, and hot plate are other ways to ready chapatis.
Varied ways of consuming chapati
In addition to eating chapatis the traditional way that includes with side dishes, you can enjoy the goodness of chapatis in other ways as well. Yes, you can prepare chapati noodles – they serve as a healthy ramen option for children. With the leftover chapatis, Indian mothers also prepare chapati curry and chapati poha for serving wholesome meals to their kids.
Also, if packing a lunchbox for your child, you can make chapati rolls that are stuffed with sauces, gravies, and vegetables.
Nutritional Value per 50 g
- Sugars: 1.36g
- Dietary fiber: 2.5g
- Thiamine (B1): 0.27 mg (24% of daily value)
- Riboflavin (B2): 0.1 mg (8.5% of daily value)
- Niacin (B3): 3.39 mg (22.5% of daily value)
- Vitamin B6: 0.135 mg (10.5% of daily value)
- Vitamin E: 0.44 mg (3% of daily value)
- Calcium: 4.6 mg (4.5% of daily value)
- Iron: 1.5 mg (11.5% of daily value)
- Magnesium: 31 mg (8.5% of daily value)
- Phosphorus: 92 mg (13% of daily value)
- Potassium: 133 mg (3% of daily value)
- Sodium: 204 mg (13.5% of daily value)
- Zinc: 0.75 mg (8.5% of daily value)