16 July 2011

Ajwain Patta Parantha

The other day I googled "Ajwain patta parantha roti" and drew a blank. My colleague brings many dishes peppered with Ajwain ka patta and I had naturally assumed that Guru Internet would list a range of options. Sadly, besides the pakoda recipe there was little to be had, even on the normally fertile food blogs. So, inspired, I have jotted down my usage.

I have to give credit here to my colleague and foodie friend N, whose mom plies us with delicious rotis stuffed with these leaves. The crux of this recipe comes from his instructions. N gave me a plant cutting a few months ago and it has been relatively easy to grow; despite my homicidal tendencies, this plant has thrived in the garden. Newbie "edible garden" enthusiasts can easily use this to boost their gardening morale.

Main actors in the plot:

6 large Ajwain leaves pureed (minimum water) with
1 green chilli
3/4 cup whole wheat flour (atta)
3/4 cup fox millet flour (bajra flour)
1/2 tsp grated ginger
Salt to taste

Drama outline:

The trick is to not use water for making the dough, but instead to use the wetness from the ajwain puree. I essentially threw everything into a mixing bowl and checked for consistency as I would normally do for making roti dough. Because of the bajra flour the dough remains a bit wetter and stickier than just plain atta dough. The point to stop adding water is when everything comes together. Then you knead it with knuckles and thumping fists. Generally, this works for me.

Rest the dough for a while. I leave it in the mixing bowl with a wet cloth on top to maintain humidity of the chamber.

I made the paranthas after leaving the gluten to break down for about 20 mins. Drink a glass of wine in the meantime.

For the parantha, I normally use as little oil as possible. I cooked the parantha on one side, till little dark spots appeared, flipped it over and for the grease, put a bit of oil from the back of a spoon on the cooked part. Then I flipped it over again, greased the new side and generally, flip it back and forth till I am happy with the colour. I have noticed however that once the roti rests for a while it changes colour. When I first started cooking I kept looking for the perfect brown and ended up with the perfect black. Now I know to look for a slightly under-done colour.

Drama outcome:
Ajwain ke patte ka parantha


  1. Love this! I usually put ajwain seeds whenever I make aata. Recently someone gave me a small ajwain plant--- and I think I shall try your parantha recipe with those leaves!

  2. Ola Dreamer.

    thanks for stopping by. do add the ginger in the roti - it adds a great zing in the taste. And the plant, indoors it will even survive in the winter!

  3. Aha. I realise now that the plant I used to have a few years ago was Ajwain. It grew almost like the beanstalk Jack had. Fill try to find another stalk now that I can see a recipe.

  4. This one is real wow ! and simple enough for a irregular kitchener like me... been growing the ajwain patta for a good few yrs.. and been looking for ways to eat it... thisz super promising... ! Thanks...
    One question on the dough though - is it bajra flour or foxtail millet... as bajra Is pearl millet not foxtail which is kauni/koni/kyuni (vernacularly in north india..) if these millet flours are not easily available.. any suggestions... other flours... ? how about channa sattu... or...
    also, bajra is the most notoriously short shelf lifed of all flours... rajasthan they say just a week ideally... so you fridge it do you...

  5. Hi Ajay,

    You are right, bajra is pearl millet, not foxtail. In this recipe though, I have made another error. When I looked at the flour package more closely it was finger millet, i.e., ragi flour. You can absolutely use other flours that are used for making rotis. When working with a mixture of flours I try to keep at least half of it wheat. I don't have a feel for working with 100% millet flours.
    Wow, I never knew bajra flour goes bad so quickly. So, no I don't put it in the fridge. I store them in air tight containers. Bangalore though doesn't get as hot at the north, so may be this works because of local weather?