Paratha is one of the most common flatbreads eaten throughout India, however, this week I am focusing on Bengali cuisine. During the growing season, green peas are used abundantly in Bengali cuisine and often make their way into flatbreads like paratha’s and kachori’s. While green pea paratha probably exists in other Indian states as well, it is very common in West Bengal. These are very common flatbreads to have for breakfast with some raita.
This has been sitting in my drafts since last year when the BM mega marathon cooked foods from all of India’s 30 states. Even though this would have been a welcome addition to the thali I created here, once I found out about the Achari Paratha which was something so unique and different from the usual, this paratha got shortlisted off of the thali.
So finally I get to make it now.
Green Pea Paratha
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Yield: 12 parathas
- 3 cups chappati flour
- 2 tablespoons ghee
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup green peas
- 3 medium green chiles
- 1 inch piece of ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon roasted cumin powder
- 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon black onion seed/nigella
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin seed
- a pinch of salt
In a food processor, puree green peas with ginger and chiles.
In a skillet, heat 1 tablespoon ghee. Add cumin seed and nigella seed. Fry for 1 minute. Add green pea paste and fry for 2 minutes. Add turmeric, cumin power and salt. Stir to combine.
In a large bowl, combine flour, ghee and salt. Add warm water a little at a time until you have a soft dough, approximately 1 – 1 1/4 cups. Cover dough with a damp cloth and leave to rest for 10 minutes.
Divide dough into 12 equal sized balls. While you work with the dough, leave the rest covered with the damp cloth.
Take one of the balls of dough and pass the dough from one hand to the next, squeezing the dough as you go from hand to hand. This will make the dough soft and smooth. Form a smooth ball. Stretch the dough in your hand to form a small cup. Place about 1 teaspoon of the green pea stuffing in the cup. Bring the dough around the cup to seal.
Place on a floured board. Sprinkle a little flour on top of the dough and roll into a circle, approximately 6-7″ in diameter.
Heat a skillet/tawa/roti iron. Brush some ghee on it. Add the piece of dough and cook for about 1-2 minutes until it starts to get puffy. Flip over and cook another 30 seconds – 1 minute, until bottom side has a few brown spots. Remove to a plate and brush the edges of the paratha with a little ghee. It is not necessary to grease the tawa/roti iron any more as you cook the rest of the parathas. Only brush the cooked paratha after it comes off the skillet/tawa/roti iron.
While you can enjoy it as a simple breakfast with raita. Try my carrot raita here or my boondi raita here. You can also include it as part of any Indian meal as I did here with Bengali Cauliflower Curry. Add Bengali Nigella Dal here for a complete Bengali meal.
I hope you have enjoyed my exploration into Bengali cuisine this week.