Thursday, April 25, 2013

Akki Roti


 If you ask my mom for a recipe - It will go something like this. Take some of this, add a little of that and tiny bit of that and a handful of that.  And her reply to how do you know when it is done -  O you can see it is done or it just comes together.  Over the years I have learnt to interpret that and apply that but in the process…
 My worst fears have been realized.. Agh#@... the transformation has happened  Agh#@#@#@  I have turned into my mom.
 So in that recipe style this is how you make Akki roti

Akki = rice. Roti losely transaltes to flatbread.
This is nothing but a wonderfully  roti made with rice flour and vegetables and herbs - a little similar to Thalipeeth . At the bare minimum, you can make this with onions and some herbs. But feel free to add whatever hard vegetables you find in your fridge. Choose vegetables that don't release too much water.  So to do this without an exact recipe:

Take a large mixing bowl and to it add:

1 large onion ( color doesn't matter) chopped really fine
2 large carrots grated
1 or large bell peppers chopped really fine
1 or 2 thai peppers  chopped really fine
2 tbsps finely chopped dill
8 -10 stalks of cilantro (both stalks and leaves) finely chopped.
1 tsp cumin seeds
Salt to taste

Mix everything well with your hands.  Then add  1.5 cups of rice flour.  The vegetables should be coated nicely in the flour.
Now add water (start with a cup) and mix to make a dough. The dough should not be stiff or too watery .  You should be able to take a ball of dough in your hand and flatten it out easily. If the dough seems too brittle, add a little more water. If the dough is too soggy add some more rice flour.

Take a small  karahi 
or  a flat skillet and spray it with some cooking oil. Make sure you have a lid for this. Take a  handful of the dough, put it on the center of the pan and flatten it outwards using your fingers. I use the outside of my fingers - it just makes it easier. Poke 2 holes in the flattened out dough so that the surface of the pan shows through.  It should now look like a face with 2 close set "eyes". Now don't ask me why you should do this- My mom always did and she did it because my grand mom always did that.

Set the pan on a medium flame and cook covered for  about 5 minutes. Open lid and check. The dough should be drying out. Now add a scant 1/2 tsp of oil around the edges and into the "eyes". Cover and cook for 2- 3 minutes more. You should see some browning around the edges and the surface should  look shiny and cooked.  Use a spatula to lift the roti out on to a plate. If you made it in a rounded vessel, it will look like a beautiful crisped bread bowl.
Remember to cool the pan before you repeat with rest of batter.

 Other variations you can try:
Fresh grated coconut or frozen and thawed coconut to the dough
Sub some of the rice flour with Raagi flour
Add finely chopped broccoli, Scallions or grated zucchini to the dough.


To serve, put a dollop of Earth Balance or butter (if you are so inclined) into the middle.  You could of course just eat it as is. But favored accompaniments  are - coconut chutney or peanut chutney or my new favorite - Poshto. My love affair with Poshto started after reading this post by Bong mom.  Bong mom spells it Posto but I believe it is pronounce Poshto.
Eat and enjoy… If you do decide to try this, please drop me a note and let me know if my instructions worked or were a disaster. I need to perfect this shtyle of providing recipes.

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