Butter chicken paratha

A couple of weeks ago, I decided to make butter chicken for dinner.  I use an easy, light recipe (there's actually no butter involved) I discovered last year that's flavorful yet neutral enough for my whole family to enjoy (including the little guy). Now the timing is going to sound suspect but I swear this is the truth...a couple of days before I was planning to make it for dinner, I happened to catch a cooking show featuring butter chicken parathas (same source for the original butter chicken recipe so it makes sense).  The idea was to use your leftover butter chicken and turn them into parathas, or unleavened flatbread. 
Homemade paratha dough is made with just whole wheat flour, some spices, and water
I am not making this up!  The timing was perfect so I knew I'd have to set aside some butter chicken to try making my own parathas.  Since I'd never done anything of the kind or considered that I could, the prospect was very exciting!  I couldn't resist the idea of being able to say I've made my own parathas.

It wasn't just for the fact that I'd have butter chicken on hand to make this that made it happen.  The real clincher was how incredibly easy the parathas are to make!  It is practically 2 ingredients - whole wheat flour and water - to make the dough.  You flavor the dough with salt and some spices (you could play around a little here, and I choose to use some curry powder) but it is as simple as combining that spiced flour with water until a dough comes together.  Then roll out the dough, fill it with your leftover butter chicken, and cook it in a dry skillet.  To give it moisture and a lovely shine, brush the paratha with a little bit of oil when it's done.
Filled with leftover butter chicken inside
I have no doubt that my technique is sadly lacking and that there are different, more involved, paratha recipes out there.  In fact, my favorite is type of paratha is aloo paratha, stuffed with spiced mashed potatoes, and I associate it with a fluffier dough that's different from this (I don't think the ones I've had are made with whole wheat flour but the difference could just well be my poor technique).  But regardless, the happy fact remains that this easy whole wheat dough worked and my family and I thought this simple paratha was quite tasty!

Please pardon my inauthentic presentation of slicing the paratha up like something of a quesadilla!  I was just trying to give a look into the filling inside.  I served the paratha with some plain Greek yogurt but it really doesn't need anything since the filling is juicy and flavorful.  It holds up well against the nutty whole wheat paratha.  

This is the kind of recipe I learn that opens my eyes to new possibilities and reinforces the idea that we can make so many things at home if we don't mind our own more rustic interpretations.


If you make the butter chicken dish and have some leftovers reserved on hand, these parathas are a cinch to make.  I tried this recipe one weekend afternoon while my sister and her family were here for brunch and we made a little snack of my experiment.  
My very imperfect round...I'm hopeful it gets better with practice!
Though easy, I did discover that the parathas I attempt won't turn out nearly as nicely round and professional as the ones I saw being whipped up on TV!  On the cooking show, the host literally took the dough balls, started flattening them out into discs with the heel of her hands, and rolled them out into perfect circles in a matter of moments! 

My own experience wasn't quite that effortless and I found that I needed a bit more dough than the recipe suggests to get approximately 6-inch rounds that we were after to make the parathas.  I've adjusted the recipe below to reflect that. 
In some paratha recipes I've looked at since making this, I notice there might be some oil added into the dough and there's mention of how the paratha should puff as it cooks on the hot skillet.  The puffing didn't happen in my case.  Being a total novice on this subject, I can only assure you that the paratha was very tasty and quite worth this fairly minimal effort.  If you like, play around with the spices you add to the flatbread dough and instead of butter chicken, you could use another type of filling and take it in a whole other direction.


Recipe:

Butter Chicken Parathas
Adapted from Bal Arneson

- For 2 parathas -

For filling
3/4 to 1 cup butter chicken

For parathas:
1 cup whole wheat flour (I used white whole wheat)
1 teaspoon curry powder (or spice of your preference such as cumin and coriander)
Pinch of salt
1/4 to 1/2 cup water
Olive, vegetable, or flaxseed oil for brushing

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, curry powder (or spices), and salt.  Start by adding 1/4 cup of water and mix together with your hands to form a dough.  Add more water, as necessary, and knead until you have a smooth dough similar to pizza dough.  Divide the dough into 4 equal pieces and roll each into a small ball.  Take one ball of dough and pat it into a round disc (use the heel of your hands to press the dough as you turn it).  Then place the dough onto a lightly floured surface and roll it out into a thin 6-inch round.

Place 1/4 to 1/2 cup of butter chicken filling on top of the rolled-out disc, leaving about a half-inch border around the sides.  Roll out a second ball of dough and place it on top of the butter chicken.  Lightly run the rolling pin over the paratha to seal, pressing the sides to make sure the filling is secure.  Repeat with second paratha.

To cook, heat a cast iron or non-stick skillet over medium-low heat.  Place a paratha on top and cook for about 1 minute, until browned.  Flip and brown the reverse side. Remove paratha from the pan and brush both sides with a bit of oil (you could also brush one side before flipping and then brush the second side).  Continue with remaining paratha.  

Serve immediately.









38 comments:

  1. Perfect timing = fate. This looks absolutely delicious! And I love anything served with Greek yogurt.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Must have been fate, yes! I would have been upset had I seen the show right after making/eating the butter chicken! I suppose I could have stuffed it with something else but it was meant to be. : )

      Delete
  2. Your parathas look great. Sometimes the perfect recipe comes at the perfect time, and you just have to make it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Timing is funny, isn't it, Beth! I don't know that much about how parathas are prepared but I know this was tasty so good enough for a home cook like me! : )

      Delete
  3. I've never had parathas - but I want some now. Don't you just love butter chicken! This is a wonderfully different and informative post Monica - thanks so much!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We used to order Indian food all the time working late when I was in the banking world. Got very familiar with take-out and I'd get chicken tikka masala and aloo paratha when it was time for Indian food. I just got a kick out of being able to make my own, no matter it might be a shortcut recipe. Glad you find it interesting, Tricia!

      Delete
  4. This looks amazing! I can't wait to try this!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's so easy, it's definitely worth a try. You don't have to use butter chicken.

      Delete
  5. I do love butter chicken but I've never had parathas. These look really tasty! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's really just making a quick unleavened flatbread in this case. Now I know I can make so many things myself when I'm home and out of bread, etc!

      Delete
  6. Wow, the parathas look great Monica...and yes, I love the idea of butter chicken in it...awesome meal!
    Enjoy the rest of your week :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Juliana! I really like this lighter butter chicken recipe and my whole family can have it together. Plus, it's quick and I now know what to do if I have leftovers! haha

      Delete
  7. These sound amazing and so does that butter chicken!! Nothing ever turns out as pretty for me as it does on TV :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Silly of me to think I could do it as easily as the TV host who I'm sure has had years of experience making roti/parathas! She had them perfectly round in 5 seconds! haha.

      Delete
  8. Whoa!!!! How did this never occur to me! Butter chicken paratha is just GENIUS, Monica! Parathas are something that we eat so often but usually, the filling is just simple curried, mashed potatoes! MY Goodness, stuffing it with butter chicken is like the best thing EVER! I am drooling by just the thought of it and looking at your lovely photos!!!! I am SOOOOOOOOOO making these for dinner very very soon! <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so glad you like it, Samina! : ) Aloo paratha, with that curried mashed potatoes, is my favorite so I'm ironically wanting to make that instead! haha. Next time I have leftover chicken tikka masala, I should use that as a stuffing!! Why not! Thanks for the sweet comment. : )

      Delete
  9. I must give it a try too. Your stuffed bread turned out just perfect, Monica.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Perfectly rustic, homemade, and unprofessional...but still tasty and a great experience! Who needs to buy flatbread anymore! ; )

      Delete
  10. Oh Monica, you're too hard on yourself! If I roll out, I am not sure what shape it will be... :D I love aloo paratha too, but actually I like any paratha... this looks so good! I have to try making butter chicken myself too. It's lunch time and it would be nice if this was served in front of me! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Nami. I would feel better if I didn't know that if *you* were making/shaping these, they would come out perfectly! ; ) And you know what I was thinking?! These parathas would be so good stuffed with your Japanese chicken curry recipe, which I've made a few times! The curry in the flatbreads would be great with your filling! I will try that next time I make your curry!

      Delete
  11. Monica, my friend, do not apologize for the goodness here. Absolutely adore you for putting out the idea. That is an amazing idea. Your parathas truly look good. Honestly, to me it's all about how you enjoy it and how it tastes. Forget about the shape and puffing..
    Like you, I don't use too much butter or cream for my butter chicken. It just feels too heavy. Love that you try different cuisines and enjoy it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are too kind, Asha! I did/do feel a little presumptuous talking about parathas when I know very little besides the ones I've eaten, and enjoyed tremendously! This is such a simple recipe that novices like myself can make so easily at home that it's worth doing. You have to start somewhere, right?! : )

      Delete
  12. This looks great! My mom does this all the time with any potato-based dish. It's so great even as a wrap :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As a wrap - great idea!! Thank you, Medha!

      Delete
  13. Genius idea! Who would have thought to stuff chicken inside a paratha and that too butter chicken. Love it !! YUMMMY!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you like it. I was amazed to make the flatbread with just the whole wheat flour and water! A meat filling is always satisfying.

      Delete
  14. Parathas are my favourite comfort food. These filled with butter chickens are quite genius and I'm really impressed! You did an awesome job, even mine aren't very round and perfect so I wouldn't worry about yours!
    My fave are also the potato, but I also love gobi, which is cauliflower. You must try those. Keema...ground meat ones are pretty delicious too.
    You have the flour right, parathas are almost always made with whole wheat flour, but the Indina chappati flour is milled a little more finely. I use what you did, white whole wheat...it's very close to the Indian flour. Great job!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for the encouragement, Nazneen. I learned so much from your comment so thank you!! I love the sound of the cauliflower ones and ground meat has to be good for us carnivores. :) I'm sure your parathas are amazing. Thanks again for sharing the info and for the kind words.

      Delete
  15. Well it was definitely meant to be! And wow these look fantastic! I've actually never heard of parathas before (I need to broaden my horizons apparently!) and man do they sound good! I hope you had a great weekend Monica!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love parathas and I'm just a big fan of Indian food but know too little about it. It's just crazy to know I can make these flatbreads with just whole wheat flour and water, Ashley. It's great to discover something new (and easy). ; ) Hope you had a great weekend, too! We had snow (again...) yesterday.

      Delete
  16. these sound absolutely divine, and they're so beautiful! love your addition of the curry powder...perfect and simple, and i'm sure a gorgeous compliment to the butter chicken inside.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I feel like I can never go wrong with some curry powder when I'm not sure. : ) I want to stuff these with Japanese chicken curry next time...that should work even better.

      Delete
  17. Wow, that's so cool and I think it was definitely meant to be :) I love parathas but have never tried making them before. I love the idea of using leftover butter chicken! Sounds delicious! I always have such a hard time with rolling out dough too but I think yours look fantastic :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So meant to be! And so easy, Kelly! I never would think I could make parathas...this might not be the ones we'd get at the restaurant but honestly, it's really tasty and you can't believe you made it from scratch yourself. Thanks for the encouragement but my rolling skills are non existent so I'm just glad I got something resembling a round!

      Delete
  18. Sometimes these perfect timings can be taken as a sign of fate; you were meant to make these butter chicken parathas, Monica! It looks amazing!!

    ReplyDelete
  19. I am so impressed that you tried your hand at making parathas. Yes, just two ingredients and these are one of those memorable and comforting food Indians associate with. Parathas or for that matter any flatbread is about practice..I wouldn't call myself an expert but in Indian homes we make this is large numbers. Like 25-30 at a time For your first attempt these are amazing! Butter chicken and parathas are a match made in Heaven...you've done a fabulous job of combining the two:-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aww...thanks, Sonali! I appreciate the encouragement. I was so amazed to make this (however amateur) with so little ingredients. I can totally see making a bit batch to have regularly at home...it's so good and nutritious. : )

      Delete

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...