Recipes: Vegan/ Recipes: Vegetarian

Coming Full Circle

My Mom is a Malaysian. My Dad, an Indian. Theirs is ofcourse, a love marriage. My Dad, being a simple man when it comes to meals, refused to forsake his Dal-Roti routine when he married my Mom. She on the other hand, could never accept that cooking a traditional Indian meal was out of her reach. So she toiled, and she toiled, and today she makes the best curries and the meanest biryanis than any born-Indian I know.

When they first got married, as my Mom once very fondly narrated this story to me, she was unaccustomed to the roti. Not knowing the perfect recipe himself, all she could get out of my Dad was that the dough was made from whole wheat and water, and rolled out into thin, soft and fluffy mouthfuls of delight. She tried her various combinations of water and flour for many days to come, until one fine day Dad had a smile on his face after the very first bite, and announced it PERFECT! Since then, she has rolled bagfuls of flour into the most delicate rotis and parathas.

One thing I learnt for Mom, was that making rotis is an art in it’s truest form. I agree. Who ever has tried to roll them into the perfect circle with only the aide of a rolling pin, will know exactly what I mean. I started out with no-so-soft-irregular-shaped ones myself. But as they say, practice makes perfect. Though mine are still not as round as the moon, they do taste good.

The other day when I decided to make one of Hubby Dear’s finest favourites, I had a slight inclination to tamper with things a little. Who ever said never to play with tradition, certainly never tasted my version of it!


Prep time: 20 min, Cooking time: 30 min | Serves: 4  

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp dried fenugreek leaves
  • 1/4 tsp carom seeds
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp light cooking oil
  • water, as needed
  • 2 medium-sized potatoes, boiled and mashed
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • salt, to taste
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tbsp freshly chopped coriander leaves

MIX mashed potatoes with salt, coriander leaves, garam masala, and fennel seeds and set aside.

MIX flour with salt, carom seeds, red chilli powder, fenugreek leaves and oil and form into a smooth dough with necessary amount of water, and allow to rest for half an hour. Once the dough is set, separate it into golf-sized balls and set aside.

FOR each dough ball, roll out the dough into a small circle and put around one tbsp of potato mixture in the centre. Bring the ends of the circle together and seal the edges completely so that the stuffing does not come out.

ROLL out into a 6 inch circle. Fry on a heated pan adding a bit of gheeoil around the edges to crisp it up.

All I have to say is, thanks Ma, for all the inspiration from your kitchen to mine.

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  • Reply
    April 14, 2008

    Wow! Those look perfect. I’ll have to try this sometime. Right now I live in a small town with no Indian grocery stores or anything that is in any way ethnic. No fenugreek or garam masala, etc. The best we get here is an “ethnic” aisle at Walmart with kosher food and Chinese sauces. I’ll have to try this when I move in May. I’m saving the link, thanks. -Allison

    I’m sure you’ll enjoy it Allison, I would love to hear you’re feedback when you try it!

  • Reply
    April 10, 2008

    These look wonderful! I would love to try my hand at them. I have made homemade tortillas before, and they usually come out looking like a deflated football or something. Making something like this, perfectly round, is indeed something that takes a LOT of practice!

  • Reply
    May 3, 2007

    looks yummy!!
    i’m gonna try it.. n i’ll insha_Allah let u know how it went..

  • Reply
    March 3, 2007

    I am not great with dough, so if I want to make perfect circles I cheat by cutting the dough with the edges of an inverted round dish. Works fine for me.

  • Reply
    November 27, 2006

    I love those parathas. Reminds me I haven’t made it in a long time. Your mom is quite good at adapting. I guess all Asians are. Do they live in India ?

  • Reply
    November 23, 2006

    hahaha…im the other way round, dad’s malaysian and mom’s indian.. no doubt mom makes great roti’s

  • Reply
    November 22, 2006

    Look awesome! 😀 How do you roll them out without the potato stuffing leaking out?! It always does when I roll them out!

    Hi Shub! The trich here is to not overload them with the filling. The standard rule of  thunb I often use is this: for 1 tbsp of filling, I make sure the dough is rolled out to atleast a 3-4 inch circle. This way, when the filiing is placed in the centre, you’ll have enough of dough spaced on the sides to bring it in and close. Hope this helps!

  • Reply
    November 22, 2006

    Happy thanks giving 🙂

  • Reply
    Rasa Malaysia
    November 22, 2006

    Hi Meena,

    Thanks for stopping by and left me a nice comment. I appreciate it. Your blog is very nice and your pictures are vivid and well-composed…so much yummylicious food!

  • Reply
    November 20, 2006

    The parathas look heavenly. I agree with you, rolling dough is an art and I am working on it 🙂

  • Reply
    November 20, 2006

    they look delicious Meena, and by the way, the new look of your website is gorgeous.

  • Reply
    November 20, 2006

    Excellent looking Parathas!! I still have to perfect that art!:))

    Wonderful to read abt your pareants, enjoy them !

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  • Reply
    November 20, 2006

    Those parathas look so soft & fluffy. YUMMYY!!!!

  • Reply
    November 20, 2006

    This is my first time visit to your blog, you have a nice blog with good recipes and pictures,
    will like to give some of them a try some day, list is too long…
    Well, i m sure i ll keep visiting you blog for more recipes.
    May I add you to my blogroll?

  • Reply
    November 19, 2006

    thanks for the recipe. looks wonderful. I have tried the same but with no fenugreek or fennel.

  • Reply
    November 19, 2006

    thanks for the recipe thanks to your mom
    such great pictures i love them.
    you are a real inspiration when it comes to cooking food and taking food pictures.

  • Reply
    November 18, 2006

    Hi, the parathas look perfect!

  • Reply
    November 18, 2006

    I really admire ur mom.. mastering indian cooking where the word curry could mean a 100 different things and in no-indian blog age !!! Hats off to her ! Lovely thanksgiving to mom !
    Convey to her my regards and wishes and my message !!


  • Reply
    November 18, 2006

    Such a sweet story. And those parathas look delicious…

  • Reply
    November 18, 2006

    Whoa! This post has a nice story to it. Good presentation, btw. And *applause* to your mom for her spirit.


    P.S : The new template is simple and warm.

  • Reply
    November 18, 2006

    Your super authentic recipes for Nasi Lemak and Mee Goreng did give me a hint 🙂
    Appreciate your mother’s spirit and determination. And you are a chip off the old block arent you?!!

  • Reply
    November 18, 2006

    Lovely looking parathas, Meena. A certain must try recipe. Thanks for entering this and for being my guest.

  • Reply
    Lakshmi Krishnan
    November 18, 2006

    The parathas look so delicious. And of course it a wholesome recipe too.

  • Reply
    November 17, 2006

    I enjoyed reading your write-up. Your mom must be one persisent and gutsy lady! Kudos to her. Also the parathas look great

  • Reply
    November 17, 2006

    ur roties r perfect unlike mine which look like different country maps from world atlas;)

  • Reply
    November 17, 2006

    This dish is one of my favorites 🙂 Thanks for the recipe and the beautiful picture. Aloo Paratha is a Saturday morning staple at my house

  • Reply
    November 17, 2006

    Looks amazing….! I am still trying to make them circle in shape[:D]
    Lovve your blog.

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