“Blues is to jazz what yeast is to bread. Without it, it’s flat.”
Carmen McRae, Jazz vocalist and pianist
Indian Flatbread … Chapati / Roti

Wrapping it up…fresh,healthy & fun!

Here’s what I did with part of the Turkish Adana Kebabs I made a few days ago. I made Indian unleavened flatbreads, chapati or roti, & made wraps using the kebabs as the filling, with bell peppers, onions, a Yogurt dip & a new discovery…Pomegranate Molasses. Served it with a Mexican corn salad on the side. I find unleavened flatbreads very healthy & versatile. They are made out of whole wheat flour dough only, which just has to be kneaded (as the Daring Bakers tag line comes to mind…We need to knead), no question of leavening agents, prior preparation etc, & above all, no preservatives . I usually leave the dough standing for 30 minutes for the gluten strands to develop…& then am ready to roll!!
Turkish Adana Kebabs…you can find the recipe here
A flatbread is a simple bread made from flattened dough. Many flatbreads are unleavened—made without yeast or sourdough culture. They can range from one millimeter to a few centimeters thick. Flatbread was already known in Ancient Egypt and Sumer.
Chapati is a type of Indian bread eaten in South Asia and East Africa. In many areas of South Asia, particularly the north of the subcontinent, and in East Africa, it is the staple food. It is made from a dough of atta flour (whole grain durum wheat), water and salt by rolling the dough out into discs of approximately twelve centimeters in diameter and browning the discs on both sides on a very hot, dry tava or frying pan (preferably not one coated with Teflon or other nonstick material). Ingredients:
Whole wheat flour – 1 1/2 – 2 cups
Water to knead
Sauteed bell peppers with onions (all sliced); saute in a little oil for just 4-5 minutes till crisp tender.
Adana Kebabs ( recipe here)
Yogurt Dip ( recipe here)
Pomegranate molasses (recipe at the bottom)
Mexican Corn Salad
  • Put the flour in a big bowl, add enough water to make a firm, softish dough.
  • Knead firmly for 5-7 minutes; it should feel pliable & come away cleanly from the edges.
  • If the dough is too sticky, sprinkle on some more flour, 1 tbsp at a time, to get a nice, pliable dough.
  • Leave to stand for 30 minutes if you have time.
  • Heat a flat pan / tava to hot.
  • Make a dough ball about 1 1/2 ” big, dust in flour on both sides, & roll out as thin & as evenly as possible.
  • Put the rolled out flat bread on the tava. Cook for 1 minute till small bubbles form on the surface, flip it over & repeat.
  • Now drizzle a little oil (1/4 tsp) & smear it all over & fry briefly on low heat. Repeat on the other side. Keep warm. Make the rest of the chapatis the same way.
  • Line a chapati with a the sauteed bell peppers & onion. Add some dip, layer it with a kebab or two, drizzle some pomegranate molasses over it…
  • Wrap it up & serve with a corn salad!
  • For the Mexican Corn Salad – Toss sweetcorn with finely chopped coriander leaves, finely chopped green chilies, diced deseeded tomatoes, chopped spring onions with greens, lime juice & salt. Add some roasted cumin powder if you like. Serve chilled!

This is my entry for Bread baking Day 7 hosted by Chili und Ciabatta…she says “think of indian chapati, naan, dosa or paratha, of italian focaccia, ethiopian injeera, swedish knäckebröd, scottish oatcakes, turkish pide, mexican tortilla, jewish matzo, armenian lavash, south tyrolean Vinschger Paarlen… this list could go on and on”… And that’s exactly what I did!

And now for the Pomegranate Molasses

The fruit chosen by Sra @ When My Soup Came Alive for AFAM this month was POMEGRANATE (the red ones are known as Kandhari Anaar’s here). This event was started by Maheswari of Beyond the Usual & has a different host each month. I bought a couple the other day & they have been staring me in the face. Read Rachel’s post of a cake she made with it, & wondered what else could come out of it other than juice, salsa, vinaigrette etc. Arundati knows I’ve been under pomegranate pressure because we spoke while I was staring at the fruit!!Making matters worse is that it’s Feb…fewer days!! To cut a long story short…well, I missed the deadline of Feb 25th! (& to end on a happy note…Sra just mailed to say she hadn’t rounded-up yet…so she accepted my pom molasses!! Thank you Sra… YAY!)

Surfing brought me to many recipes…one which caught my attention was Pomegranate Molasses on a blog called NamiNami & also on Simply Recipes. ‘Pomegranate molasses’ is a traditional ingredient in Middle Eastern cooking and can be used in a variety of dishes. Here’s a bit of it that I made…mainly for AFAM, but also because I thought it would taste great with the kebab wraps…& it did! It’s like a piquant plum sauce…tangy & beautiful. My pictures don’t do justice to it…because ‘hurry made curry’ this time!! Also, the quantity is very little because we used up quite a bit…story of my blogging life….PHEW!!

Pomegranate Molasseson the Middle Eastern food trail!

Pomegranates – 4 medium sized
Juice of 3-4 limes
Sugar – 1/4 – 1/2 cup (as per taste)

  • Take out the pomegranate seeds ( the red juicy pearls) & blend them in a liquidiser.
  • Pour them through a muslin lined soup strainer to collect the clear liquid..the yummy juice! Squeeze the cloth to catch as much juice. The colour is to die for. It’s very tempting to abandon all plans & take a swig of the delicious juice…O well!
  • Put the juice with the sugar & lime juice in a pan & simmer, for 45-60 minutes till beautiful & thick…like molasses. It will thicken a bit as it sits.
  • Cool & store in a jar in the fridge.
  • Elise at Simply Recipes says…”You can also mix it with a little orange juice and club soda for a refreshing punch”. Sounds great…the daughter also said I can make a Kool-aid like drink with it! I’ll keep it as a sauce though, thank you; its beautiful like this!!

Blended & strained…

“Vegetables are the food of the earth; fruit seems more the food of the heavens.”
Sepal Felicivant
AFAM (A Fruit A Month) is a wonderful blog event which highlights different fruits. The event this month is being hosted by AkshayPatra and her fruit of choice is ‘DATES’.

Golden opportunity for me to try the ‘Date & Walnut Loaf ‘ which I have been dying to try but have never quite got there. Last evening was a mad frenzy of date chopping & general confusion since I got to the event announcement late as usual! Huff Puff!!! Loaf was out of the oven last night, looking good, smelling great….& I couldn’t wait to slice it this morning to get pictures for the post.

WOOHOO…Now that’s done, the loaf has gone back to the tin…shall wait for the kids to get back from school & do the honours. What an addiction this is…phew!
(They each had 2 slices; LOVED it!!)

Flour – 1 cup
Baking soda – 1 tsp
Baking powder – 2 tsp
Sugar – 1 4/ cup
Margarine – 25gms (I used butter)
Dates – 350gms (chopped)
Water – 142ml/ 1/4 pint (boiling)
Egg – 1
Walnuts – 1/2 cup/100gms (chopped)


  • Preheat the oven to 150 degrees C. Grease and line bottom of a 9 X 5 loaf pan, or 8 ” round cake tin.
  • Sift the dry ingredients together.
  • Put the chopped dates + margarine (or butter) + sugar in a deep bowl & pour the boiling water over it. Allow to cool.
  • Stir in the flour mix + eggs + walnuts.
  • Put batter into tin, level out and bake for about 50-60 minutes.
  • Cool on a rack. Slice only when cold. (I wrap it in cling wrap overnight for the flavours to mature, and then sliced it the next morning)

Nice wrapped as a gift too…
This is a much loved loaf in our house, just right for the season…moist & delicious & low on fat!! A dear friend of mine used to make it with plump dates she got from the UK…with outstanding results. I would suggest you get the best quality dates you can lay your hands on; then sit back & enjoy this treat.
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