Recipe – This makes 21 roti
2 cups vegetable oil
1 cup of extra flour for dusting
For the Dough
8 cups all purpose flour
5 tablespoons baking powder
6 cups of water
For the Filling
2 cups of yellow split peas
8 cups of water
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon ground geera
4 leaves of shadow beni
4 cloves of garlic
1 habanero pepper
Bring to a boil the 8 cups of water in a large pot on the stove top. Once the water has started boiling add the split peas. The peas will take about 15 minutes. But you need to keep your eyes on it. The only way you will know when it is done is to remove a few of the peas and try squishing it between your fingers. It should come away with a sandy texture.
If you let it over cook, it will not spread evenly throughout the dough. If it is under cooked then it will not grind very well.
After the peas are done, drain the water from it and set it aside to cool.
I used a food processor, however if you have a dhal mill use it.
If you are using the food processor, only add a cup of the cooked split peas to it at a time. If you add too much then it will not grind all the peas. And we really do not want to be biting into big chunks of pea while grubbing on our roti.
Once you have ground all the split peas, it should be the consistency of barely moist sand…I know…it sound weird. But it should soft and fluffy.
Also process the shaow beni, pepper and garlic and add this to the ground split peas. Add the salt and geera as well. Mix well with your fingers if you can. Make sure to break up any clumps of seasoning. Set this aside.
Now we are going to mix the dough together. Add all the dry ingredients together and adding a cup of water at a time, mix with your hands.
Try to squeeze the wet dough through your fingers so that it mixes in well. You need a really soft, sticky consistency to the dough. Once the dough is mixed set it aside to rest for 5-10 minutes.
Break your dough into little pieces about the size of tennis ball. (this really depends on the size of your tawa/baking stone) After breaking them apart, roll it into a smooth ball. You will need to dust the surface with flour so that it does not stick.
Once you have rolled out all the dough into small balls, you are going to fill each one now with the ground split pea mixture.
Take one ball at a time and flatten it with the palm of your hands, using a table spoon, fill some of the split pea into the center of the flattened disk. Do not over fill.
Start pinching the edges together to close back up the dough around the filling. (refer to pictures)
Repeat this for all of the dough.
Heat the tawa on the stove to a medium to low heat. NOT high, or else the roti will burn without cooking fully. Pour a cup of vegetable oil into a bowl and place it next to the stove where you will be cooking. You will also need a basting brush to baste the oil over the roti.
Using a rolling pin start rolling out your ball one at a time into a circle. The dough needs to be thin but try your best not to tear it. Otherwise your filling will spill out.
Place the rolled out dough on the tawa. once you start to see small bubbles on the top of it, flip it using the flat end of a pot spoon or your dabla. Baste the cooked side with a little of the oil. Be sure to get all the edges. Flip it over and do the same for the next side. Once both sides have been coated with oil, press down on the edges with the spoon, until it starts to swell or rise.
Once the roti has risen, you know it is done cooking. Remove from the tawa and cover tightly with a dish towel. Repeat this until all of your roti has been cooked.
I know this is a long process, but it is well worth it. You can adjust the recipe to suit the number of rotis you would like to make.
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