Decoding Makki Ki Roti

It is said, some matches are made in heaven. One such match is Makki Ki Roti and winters. For most North-Indian households, especially Punjab, winters mean piping hot makki ki roti, with a dollop of butter on top and served with sarson da saag (cooken green mustard leaves). It is quite the crowd pleaser. It is iron-rich and high calorie count provides succour during the harsh northern winter.

Makki ki roti is made from makki(corn). Since the adhesive property of  corn is less in comparison to wheat, kneading the dough and rolling out rotis takes some practice to perfect. So, what makes this popular dish relevant in places with moderate climes like Mumbai. The trick is to twist the traditional version to the local palate.

Here are a few innovative ways on how to have the favourite makki ki roti.

Savory Corn Tarts:

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The makki ka atta (cornmeal flour) can be made into tarts in a pie dish. The filling can be either the traditional sarson ka saag or spinach. Garnish it with Feta cheese.

Corn Tortillas :

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The cornmeal flour can be made into tortillas. Stuff it with your favourite filling.

Makki Tacos:

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Fresh Tacos made with makki and stuff it with a fresh salad or meat.

Makki Sanwiches:

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Use the makki ka atta to make little discs or bake them into savoury biscuits. Take a disc, put a blob of sarson ka saag and butter and place another disc on top. Enjoy the rustic sandwich.

Mumbai is a melting pot of various cultures. People from all over the country have migrated to this economic hub, mostly for professional reasons. If you are craving home-style makki ki roti, here are a few places you can check out.

  1. Fenix, The Oberoi (Nariman Point)
  1. Papa Pancho da Dhaba (Pali Hill)
  1. Oye Kake (Fort)
  1. Vaishno Punjab (Chembur)
  1. Made In Punjab (Malad West)
  1. Punjabi Moti Halwai (Fort)
  1. Bhagat Tarachand (Vashi, Navi Mumbai)
  1. Pratap The Dhaba (Oshiwara, Andheri West)
  1. Urban Tadka (Mulund West)
  1. Pritam Da Dhaba (Dadar East)

The beauty of Indian cuisine is that there’s no sacrosanct recipe for a particular dish. Each region lends its unique flavour to the ingredients. The tradional version is served with white butter and lassi. If this sounds a little heavy for your palate, you can replace the lassi with buttermilk and skip the butter (although butter enhances the taste substantially).

So, here’s an idea. On a weekend, invite your friends for a Punjabi themed dinner. Serve them piping hot makki di roti and an assortment of accompaniments. You can  have shahi paneer , sarson ka saag or methi matar malai (fenugreek leaves with peas cooked in a creamy gravy) as side dishes. Or if you are feeling a little lazy, have this nutritious roti with raita and achar.

So, what’s stopping you? Twist this ever popular recipe the way you want. And don’t forget the most important ingredient, LOVE!!

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