Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Indian Shahi dinner with Lachcha and Shahi Parathas

In the afternoon while taking a sip of darjeeling tea from my tintin mug I started to plan my dinner menu. Today I was in the mood to cook Indian cuisine however the regular stuff like always was off my lists. So I decided to cook two different types of paratha and a chicken side dish. Recently during my visit to Kolkata I tasted the perfect laccha paratha and shahi paratha at the Sonargaon restaurant of Taj Bengal. This thought came to my mind and it suddenly occurred to me that the only person who could help me with my en-devour is our friend Shamba  Mukherjee who happens to be a great chef. The easiest way to communicate with him is to write a message in Facebook. I wrote to Shamba and to my delight he replied back immediately. I must say he is also a very good teacher. The last line of his detailed message, explaining the secrets to perfect parathas was that I had to send him the photos of what I had cooked. I read the message twice to get the recipe into my head. All the necessary ingredients were there in my pantry and thus started my venture with the parathas.

The dough for the lachcha parathas
The Lachcha paratha
  • First I prepared the dough for the lacha paratha. I shifted the dough and the baking powder. 
  • In a bowl with 500 grams of flour, I added 5 grams of  baking powder. Then I took the necessary amount of water needed for kneading the dough. I used lukewarm water because the ghee(clarified butter) would dissolve better in it. I added salt and 1 teaspoon of sugar in it. 
  • Then I made a well in the middle of the kneading bowl and poured the water in it. The water must be at room temperature. The I started to knead the dough and then left it to rest in a cool place for 30 minutes.
  • Now it is time to divide the dough into fist size balls. The I greased it with ghee and flattened it with the help of a rolling pin. Again greased both the sides and then made pleats to make a fan. Then rolled this lengthwise into a ball and kept it in a cool place for 30 minutes. Then with the help of my palm I flattened it a bit and then used a rolling pin to flatten it again. 
  • Now it was time to grill the paratha. I first grilled it dry on a non stick pan and then add oil or ghee from the sides and grilled both the sides nicely. To remove the excess oil and keep it soft, I removed it from the heat and put it on top of a paper napkin and covered it with another paper napkin. 
  • I made 3 such parathas and then served them with Chicken Butter masala.

The Lachcha paratha ready on the pan
The Shahi paratha
The dough for the shahi parathas 
  • For the Shahi Paratha first i dissolved saffron in lukewarm milk.
  • Then I added the salt, one and a half teaspoon of sugar  and ghee in it. I shifted  500 grams of flour and 5 grams of baking powder in a bowl. When the saffron mixture came to room temperature, make a well in the flour and pour this mixture and knead it into a dough. 
  • The dough needs to be kneaded nicely for sometime. Then I left it to rest it in a cool place for 30 minutes. 
  • I divided the dough into fist size balls and then left it to rest it for another 30 minutes. Then I greased the ball with ghee and flattened it with the help of a rolling pin. 
  • Like the lachcha paratha, I first grilled the shahi paratha dry in a non stick pan. Then I added oil or ghee from the sides and grilled both the sides nicely. Voila! Shahi Paratha is ready to be served.
The shahi paratha ready on the pan
Shahi paratha ready to be grilled

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