Methi Dhebra

Dhebras are a Gujarati roti made out of pearl millet flour (Bajra flour). I love eating them – obviously because they taste great – but also because they are really healthy. If you want to give wheat a miss, but still have roti, then this is a good option. I must confess, I have struggled with making them quite a few times. Working with Bajra flour can be tricky if you do not get the consistency right. There isn’t any gluten to hold the bajra dough together and make it elastic, like wheat flour dough. My hits and misses have enabled me to refine the recipe to a point where you do not end up with a glue-like dough sticking to your fingers.

What you need:
Bajra flour, 1 cup
Methi / Fenugreek leaves (finely chopped), 1 cup
Coriander leaves (chopped), 1/2 cup
Green chillies (chopped), 2-3
Ginger (paste), 1 teaspon
Besan flour, 1 tablespoon
Fresh curds, 1 tablespoon
Jaggery, 2 teaspoons (adjust this according to taste)
Asafoetida, 1/4 teaspoon
Salt to taste
Oil, 2 tablespoons

To make the dough:
Break down the jaggery into a powder if you have it in the form of a large piece. Mix all the ingredients together, adding the curds slowly till all the ingredients are combined. Since the methi and coriander leaves will give out some moisture, it is okay to have a stiff dough. The consistency should be moist but not sticky – sort of like a dry Plasticine. If the dough has too much moisture, you can add more flour to balance it. Leave this dough covered in a warm place for about 15 minutes.

To make the dhebras:
Divide the dough into small rounds and pat each round into thick discs of approximately 2-3 inches in diameter. You can be brave and go for a larger circle, but I find that they tend to break while transferring them onto the griddle for cooking. You could use a rolling pin to flatten the discs out, but again, they tend to break when rolled out.

Place the discs onto a hot griddle and cook. You need not add any oil if you want to cut down on the calories. It will be cooked when you see brown spot appear on the surface of the dhebra. Do not cook on a very high flame or you will burn the outside and leave the inside of the dhebra raw. Serve hot with fresh raita or curds.


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