This is my version of the very popular channa batura, a dish that’s still afresh ever since I crossed its path. The clever combination is what it makes so special. The combination of puffed and tasty textured baturas with delicious and rich channa masala is more than a delectable dish. An item to savor, it entices our taste buds and never loses its flavor.
Just the thought of it is enough to evoke an imaginary set up, to create the same atmosphere which I got it served the very first time. That was years ago at a restaurant in Bangalore. The whole experience was quite amazing. I felt like as if I had a heavy meal. It was filling and the instant pleasant satisfaction worth keeping it on the menu. The price is darn reasonable, too. Even better if we prepare it at home since we have the privilege to draining off any excess grease to stay out of unwanted troubles. It’s up to us to decide whether to have it for breakfast or lunch or dinner, or just as snacks.
So far I’ve eaten baturas at a number of places. Apart from slight variations, channa baturas still rock and folks love to rave about it. Back then, I had no idea what to do to get the completely puffy bread, or why the bread deflates so quickly etc. People use different techniques to reduce the elasticity and make it comfortable to chew. Well, I found that adding wheat flour would reduce the elasticity and it helps to avoid the rubbery texture as well. Also, reducing the amount of moist content and kneading the dough till smooth to the touch would be the ruse to keep the baturas puffy and crispy. So, as you prepare the dough, don’t add too much water. It tends to deflate the bread. So start with little water at a time and knead well. The texture of the dough should be firm yet smooth to the touch. While frying, remember to gently press the ladle on the bread till it shows signs of puffing up. Since I managed to fry each one of them quite perfectly, it’s time to boast about it 🙂
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup wheat flour
¼ cup semolina
¼ tsp soda powder
Salt to taste – ½ tsp or so
1 cup water
1 tbsp oil
Oil for frying
In a big mixing bowl, combine the flours, soda powder, salt and oil and mix well. Then add the water, knead well and make it soft. Divide the dough and make equal lemon size balls. Transfer the balls in a clean dry bowl. Cover the bowl and allow it to rest for 30 minutes or so.
When you’re ready to fry, heat the oil in a frying and start rolling out the balls into circles and fry them in hot oil. As I mentioned, while frying, remember to gently press the ladle on the bread till it shows signs of puffing up. Then flip the other side and remove it from the oil using a slotted spoon and transfer it on a paper towel to drain any excess grease. Enjoy!