The minute I read Valli’s description of “Bread Baking” on BM# 15 announcement, I knew I have to make an Indian bread for the marathon. So after 2 days of Western breads I have this very Indian Kulcha that is baked in the oven.
Recipe is adapted from Raghavan Iyer’s “660 Curries” cookbook. I actually made a lot of changes to the original recipe — I used some sourdough starter as I was feeding my starter that day and used the cast off to make these kulchas. I added chapati flour (atta) along with all-purpose flour (original recipe used only all-purpose flour). Also original recipe used buttermilk, but since my starter is one a slightly watery side, I used thick greek yogurt instead.
The key to soft and pliable kulchas is to roll them slightly thick and bake them for just 3-4 minutes.
For the dough:
- 1/2 cup All-purpose flour (original recipe called for 3cups of all-purpose flour)
- 1/2 cup Sourdough starter
- 2 cups flour Chapathi (Atta)
- 2 tsp Baking soda
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 tbsp Sugar
- 1/2 cup Greek yogurt (original recipe used 1/2 buttermilk)
For the filling:
- 1 Red onion - large, very finely chopped
- 3 - 4 chilies Green - finely chopped
- 1/4 cup Cilantro - finely chopped
- to taste Salt
- Combine all the ingredients for the dough in a large bowl and make a smooth and soft dough using warm water. Knead well for 5-10 minutes. Cover with kitchen towel and set aside for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, divide the dough into 8 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a smooth ball and place them on a lightly greased plate. Cover and let rest for 30 more minutes.
- While the dough rests, prepare the filling - mix all the ingredients under filling in a small bowl. Set aside until ready to use.
- Dough does not rise as much as a yeasted dough would, but will definitely puff up a little bit.
- Place a baking stone or overturned baking sheet in the oven and Preheat to 450F.
- Roll one piece into 5" round using atta/flour as needed. Keep aside. Roll another piece in the same manner. Spread 1/4 of the filling on the rolled out dough and place the first roound on top of it. Lightly press to seal the edges.
- Gently place the kulcha on the baking stone and bake for 4-5 minutes or until the dough is cooked through and some blisters start to appear.
- Repeat with the remaining 6 dough balls to make a total of 4 kulchas.