Thursday, October 25, 2012

#240 Sizzling Street Food- Porotta

The Travel Channel's famous culinary traveler Anthony Bourdian had his share of sheep testicles in Morrocco and a whole beating Cobra heart in Vietnam but the simple street food that he relished back on the Streets of Kerala made him remark as such....
"I enjoyed eating the street Food in Kochi especially the 'fish head' curry at the local toddy shop"! It's not just in Kochi but all over Kerala and the entire country there are authentic heart-warming meals served by street vendors and down-to-earth simple dishes at reasonable prices. Roadside eateries were born from the need to feed day laborers who returned from work hungry but the authenticity of the food took a turn and attracted many food lovers to Thattukada food.

Street Food is normally found in little stalls called "Thattukadas" and there is one around every corner in every big city and even all over India. The simplicity of the ingredients and presentation make it all the more appealing, yet every part of India has at least one speciality street food they call their own. An old favorite from Kerala stands out in my mind - the layered Porotta served with spicy Chicken, Egg, beef or Vegetable Curry. Not to be confused with the Paratha, although both belong to the same food family of Flatbreads. Let's just say that Kerala Porotta is similar to the Laccha Paratha. Made from All purpose Flour and layered by the technique of folding, wrapping and rolling the dough, Porotta is cooked inside a wok instead of the skillet and cooked covered. It's crispy outside and soft tender layered insides just fall apart while eating which is why crowds are so drawn to Thattukadas for more!!

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup milk
1 cup boiling water(use sparingly just to bring the flour together)
1/4 cup Olive Oil
Salt and sugar to taste

1.Mix together flour and salt in a bowl.
2.Add 2 Tblspoons oil and the rest of the ingredients and make a soft dough. Make sure to pat the dough hard on a clean surface to make it soft. Do not use the entire water but just enough to make the dough.
3.Cover the dough with a wet cloth to rest for aleast 4 hrs.
4.Before making the porottas, knead the dough once again with hands.
5.Apply oil over a clean surface like the kitchen counter top.
6.Make small balls of the dough and roll them out as thin as possible with a rolling pin but in oval shape.
apply a little oil over the surface spreading it all around with your fingers.
7.Fold the rolled dough like a fan making pleats as you go along into a long pleated strand of dough as it appears in the picture to the left.

8.Stand the strand up on a flat surface and roll from one end to the inside to form a round. This is done to get the layers. Make sure to bind the ends well to hold together as seen in the photo to the right.
9. Place each roll on the clean counter and roll again but this time make a circle about a maximum of 1/4 inch thick and 6-7 inches diameter.
Note: Make sure to roll the porotta only one one side to keep the layers separate.
10. Place a wok or deep pan over a medium flame. Cook each flatbread inside adding 1/2 tspn of oil on both sides.
11. Cook covered with a tight lid until cooked on both sides and inside.
12. Remove and pat the edges inside to flake the bread.
13. Serve with a spicy chicken, beef, egg or vegetable kurma.


  1. it reminds me scenes from usthad hotel...porotta is superbly layered

  2. Julie Thanks for stopping by
    Biny, Did you mention "Usthad hotel" in TVM? I'm familiar with that one ...Love it:)

  3. This looks great - never heard of porotta before, what a cool sounding name too. Looks super easy to make... do you know if people ever make variations, like with flavoured/spiced dough?

  4. Homemade ones must be delicious! Beautiful swirls turning into nice patterns. :)

  5. i am loving the new blog look and layout! so nice! This looks really cool and delicious. Love the pattern to it


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