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Bhatura
(Thick, leavened puris)


Commercial yeast is seldom used in Vedic breads. More often, a batter is left in a warm place to ferment. In hot climates, batter will ferment in hours; in the colder climates we sometimes use baking powder to speed up the process.


In India bhaturas are often eaten for breakfast with channa raita (spiced chick-peas) and yogurt.
 

Preparation time: 20 min
Standing time: overnight plus 2 hrs
Rolling and cooking time: 4 min for each bhatura

 

2/3 cup (150 ml) plain yogurt
2 teaspoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2/3 cup (150 g) white flour
3 cups (300 g) atta or sifted whole-wheat flour
2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon ghee or butter
1/2 cup (125 ml) warm water
ghee or vegetable oil for deep-frying


Start the night before by mixing together the yogurt, sugar, baking powder, and white flour in a large bowl. Cover the bowl with a cloth, and set it aside in a warm place overnight to allow natural fermentation to take place. The mixture is ready for the next step when bubbles appear on the surface.
 

In another bowl, mix together the atta or sifted whole-wheat flour with the salt, and rub the ghee or butter into it with your fingertips. Into this bowl, add the fermenting mixture and the warm water. Work it with your hands until it holds together and forms a dough. Knead the dough for 5 - 10 minutes or until it is silky smooth. Add a little flour if it is too wet. Now gather it into a compact ball, cover it with a damp cloth, and set it aside in a warm place.
 

After 2 hours, knead the dough again. Form it into 15 balls and roll them into 5-inch (13 cm) discs. Heat the ghee and deep-fry the bhaturas exactly as you would puris.