Tikhi Bhakri (Spicy Wheat Flatbread)

August 25, 2008

Bhakri is a crispy unleavened wheat flatbread. I say spicy in the title, but it is not really spicy at all. It does include a small amount of red chili powder..thus the name spicy I guess. However, bhakri dough is very stiff..stiffer than parathas’ dough. I think making bhakris is an arm workout in itself…the main reason I think twice before making them 😉

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Tikhi bhakri has been my favorite breakfast ever since I can remember. When we were kids, mom made this for us every Sunday morning. We used to so look forward to it. Hot bhakris with a dollop (I know..but I loved it!) of ghee on top of it and some godkeri (a gujju pickle) and lasan chutney on side with hot cup of tea! It was purely heaven. Both my sister and me would stuff ourselves up with bhakris and tea and then skip lunch. Even now, whenever I visit India, mom makes this every single morning of my visit.

When J and I visited India about 2 years ago for our second wedding ceremony (We got married once here in the US and my family couldn’t get here due to late visa appointments and a second time in India), it was his first time there and naturally he was quite nervous about meeting my family, relatives, indian food, etc. It was during this trip that I realized that in India (at least in our home), we have so many varieties of foods, gujarati, maharashtrian, north indian, south indian, street food..the list can go on. But all this is still Indian food..with Indian spices, curries, etc. unlike here in US where we cook/eat italian, indian, mexican, middle eastern, etc. cuisines. It was very difficult for J because first he had to be a vegetarian for two weeks..which he could manage (barely! 😉 ) and second he couldn’t take indian food for 3 times a day for two straight weeks. We had to go to restaurants for italian food and pizzas so that he could get a break. But one thing that he loved and begged my mom to make it, was tikhi bhari. He pretty much had it 3 times a day on some occasions. It is a prefect breakfast for us now…i.e. when I am ready for an arm workout!

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Recipe: Tikhi Bhakri
(Makes 6 bhakris)

Ingredients

1-1/2 cups wheat flour (atta)
1/4 tsp red chili powder
1/8 tsp turmeric
1 Tbsp oil
Salt per taste
Warm water for kneading


Method

In a plate with sides, mix flour, red chili powder, turmeric, salt and oil. Pour warm water in the mix and knead till you get a stiff dough. Make six equal pieces of dough. Roll each piece of dough into a round disc..about 1/4″ thick.

Heat a skillet on medium-high heat. Place one rolled disc onto the skillet. When you see bubbles forming on the top side of the disc, turn it to cook the other side. With a clean kitchen towel press on the top of bhakri. Turn it to the other side and repeat pressing it down with the kitchen towel. This makes the bhakri crsipy. Once cooked on both sides, place the bhakri on a plate and pour a small amount of ghee on it. Repeat till all bhakris are cooked. Enjoy it with a cup of tea!

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