Wednesday, May 2, 2012

gluten free chia-flax-rice roti

While in India, every time I had a wheat based dish I'd start thinking about how when I got back to San Diego that I'd make a gluten free version of whatever I was eating. I had all kinds of ideas. I still do, so stay tuned for veggie voyager versions of all kinds of stuff.

This is my first contribution to the GF Indian flatbread family, and certainly not the last. I am looking forward to trying some Tibetan steamed bread recipes in the near future.

Chapatti and Roti are unleavened flatbreads traditionally made using whole wheat flour and cooked on a flat skillet called a tava. In some parts of India, hardly a meal is eaten without chapatti or roti.

We are staying with dear family/friends in Goleta, CA, just north of Santa Barbara. We are here to visit, to see Steve Martin play his banjo, plan another mosaic project, and eat good, healthy food.

of course, being californian, some of us did it taco style...

When I planned to make this meal, I didn't even realize that I was making a GF version of Camel Safari Masala, until Ryan pointed it out to me. I made a masala with brussels sprouts, black eyed peas, and cauliflower florets. It was tasty alongside cilantro chutney, raw mango chutney and fresh plain yogurt.

These flatbreads are a slightly pliable but not quite as soft as wheat based chapatti or roti (which are basically the same thing). The rice flour results in a slightly drier, crispier bread that is less heavy than its wheat-based relative. They are speckled throughout with chia seeds. They are perfect for conveying morsels of the masala over to the mouth region. I did not use a recipe per-say, but I will walk you through the process so you can enjoy them at home.

GF Chia-Flax-Rice Roti

  • 2 TBS chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup flax meal
  • 2 TBS oil of your choice (I used olive)
  • 2-3 cups rice flour (I like brown rice flour)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup of water or so

Combine the chia seeds, flax meal, oil, salt and water. Add one cup of rice flour and mix. Continue mixing and adding rice flour a little bit at a time until the dough forms a ball. Knead the dough as you would a wheat dough, adding small amounts of rice flour to prevent it from getting sticky. When the dough is elastic and smooth, create a log that is about 1 1/2 inches in diameter and 1 foot long. Cut this log into sections that are about 1 inch wide. Using your fingers, press each section into a flattened disk. Dust each side with rice flour and roll out using a rolling pin on a flour dusted surface until you have a thin, round sheet, not unlike a tortilla. Heat a skillet and rub with a small amount of oil. In India, they take a half potato or onion, stab it with a fork, dip the flat side into oil and use that to oil the pan. You don't need much oil if any at all for this, just an initial amount to help start the process. When the pan is hot, add one roti and cook until it begins to blister. Flip and continue cooking until it is cooked to your liking. Set aside and continue with the rest until you have a delicious stack of crispy roti. Enjoy with masala, curry or chutney.
ready for rolling out.


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