There is something special about chola-kulcha. For me, it brings back memories of the food-streets of Delhi. Every summer vacations when we used to spend almost a month at my mom’s sisters home in Delhi and the biggest excitement used to be the medley of street food Delhi has to offer. In Jaipur, in the market close to our school, we had a road side stall that claimed to have “dilli ke mashoor chole kulche”. Nowadays with healthy food becoming the norm, I make most of the street food at home so that the memories can still be re-lived :). Making chola kulchas at home is very easy. Instead of just white flour, I use whole wheat as well so that the kulcha bread has more fibre. Moreover, it is a one dish complete meal so great when entertaining a big gathering.
Last weekend I was hosting a bunch of friends. We were a group of 8 adults and 6 kids and I thought what better than chola kulchas! Be a kid or a grown-up, its a favourite of all!
Another combination could be chole bhature! But I didn’t want to deep fry for dinner so decided to try and make kulchas – a type of Indian bread very similar to naan but doesn’t need an earthen oven. They were an instant hit :).
Kulchas are best served hot so me and my friend were making them as people ate. It was almost like standing at a chola kulcha stall and getting hot kulchas straight from the tava onto their plates :). The only drawback being, not everyone can eat together…
I had a little dough left and I made some cheese filled kulchas for breakfast next day and those were amazing just on their own. warm melted cheese oozing out.. mmm….
Whole wheat Indian Kulcha bread
By Ashima Goyal Siraj
Preparation Time time: Cooking time: Serves: 12 (makes 20-25 kulchas)
3 cups all purpose white flour (maida)
3 cups whole wheat flour (Indian chapatti aata )
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp salt
2 tsp sugar
2 tbsp oil
~2 cups yoghurt
2 tbsp nigella seeds (kalongi)
softened butter to cook the kulchas
some dry flour for dusting
- In a big mixing bowl sift together both the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar
- Add the oil and mix it in using your fingers
- Add a little water to yoghurt and knead the flour into a medium-soft dough
- Cover the dough with a damp muslin cloth/ tea towel and set aside for 15 minutes
- After 15 minutes, knead the dough once more for about 5 minutes. Again cover it with a damp cloth and leave aside for 4 hours.
- Make small (about 2-inch diameter) balls of the dough. Put the tava/ flat pan on heat.
- Sprinkle soem dry flour on your rolling surface. Take one ball, flatten with you fingers on the rolling surface, sprinkle some nigella seeds on top and then roll it into an approximately 6-inch diameter circle.
- If you wish it to look more like naan, stretch it from one end to make a triangle.
- Put the rolled out kulcha, with the side with nigella seeds facing down, on the hot tava. Apply some butter on the top side and turn the kulcha over. Press down a little in between. Apply more butter as required. Cook for about 2 minutes on each side until there are small golden spots on both sides.
- Serve it hot!
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