There’s nothing better than a stack of flaky, coiled rotis or parathas to enjoy alongside a feast of Indian and Sri Lankan dishes. This coiled roti recipe is from Karan Gokani’s Hoppers The Cookbook and includes handy, step-by-step photos to help you master the process.
Read my full review of Hoppers: The Cookbook by Karan Gokani.
We serve this coiled roti (known as malabar parotta in south India) alongside our Bone Marrow Varuval (page 256) at the restaurants, and I can’t think of many breads that are more addictive. Think of it as a flattened croissant combining crisp, golden, wafer-thin layers alternating with moist and stretchy bits of roti hidden beneath.
Getting the crisp flaky layers right requires a bit of technique and practice. I’ve tried to simplify the process here, but I’d recommend making a little more dough than you think you will need to get some practice in. If you do manage to get it right on your first attempt, rest assured you won’t regret having made some extra!
- 100 ml (3½ fl oz) whole milk
- 90–125 ml (3–4 fl oz) warm water
- 300 g (10½ oz) plain (all-purpose) flour, plus extra for dusting
- ⅓ tsp salt
- ½ tsp sugar
- ¼ tsp baking powder
- vegetable or neutral oil, to cook
Warm the milk to 32–37°C (90–99°F) in a small pan, then combine with 90ml (3fl oz) of the warm water. Combine the fl our, salt, sugar and baking powder in a bowl. Add the milk and water and knead well until the dough comes together. Trickle in the remaining 30ml (1fl oz) water a splash at a time, kneading in between each addition. You don’t need to add all the water; stop when the dough is the consistency of smooth and soft Play-Doh. It should feel moist, but not stick to your hands.
Divide into five or six 80–100g (2¾–3½oz) balls. Coat each ball in oil, cover with cling film (plastic wrap) and rest for 3–4 hours or overnight in the fridge.
Roll the rested dough into 2cm (¾in) thick discs on a well-oiled surface and rest for 2–3 minutes. Starting with the first disc, carefully stretch the dough into a rectangle as far as you can without tearing. This takes a bit of practice; it’s ok to use a rolling pin if you find this easier. Brush a thin layer of oil and sprinkle a couple of pinches of flour over it. Roll the dough tightly from top to bottom like a swiss roll. Then coil the roll into a tight circle, pinching the edge to secure it from unravelling. Repeat with the remaining discs, then cover and rest again for 10 minutes.
When ready to cook, preheat a frying pan (skillet) over a medium-high heat and roll the balls out to 10–12cm (4–4½in) discs. Add a splash of oil to the pan followed by the first roti and fry for 1 minute. Flip the roti and fry for a further minute, then continue to flip every 20 seconds until the roti is golden and crisp. It should take 3–4 minutes in all. Repeat with the remaining rotis and serve straight away or store in an airtight container until ready to eat. It is traditional to crush the rotis lightly just as they come off the pan, as this opens up all the layers, resulting in a mass of flaky roti that looks and tastes divine.
Made the recipe? Let us know how you got on in the comments.
You may also enjoy these recipes, cookbook reviews and restaurants reviews for Indian food and these cookbook reviews and recipes for Sri Lankan food.
Kavey Eats received a review copy of Hoppers The Cookbook by Karan Gokani from publishers Quadrille. Book photography by Ryan Wijayaratne. Home photography by Kavita Favelle.