After a delightful dinner at a local Malaysian restaurant last week, I was determined to make roti chanai, the incredible bread served with delicious homemade curry as an appetizer. Below is the recipe I used, along with tips I used from this article on how to get it just right!
3 cups plain flour
Pinch of salt
Pinch of sugar
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup water
1/5 cup extra water
Combine dry ingredients in a medium sized bowl.
Add the liquids (milk and initial portion of water) gradually to flour, working mixture with your hands. Knead until the dough is smooth and elastic – kind of like play-dough. You will probably have to add some of the extra water while you are kneading to get the dough to the play-dough like consistency. Flours differ so you won’t know exactly how much water you need until you start kneading and can feel the dough.
Form the dough into a roll then pinch the the roll into six pieces.
Oil your hands with peanut oil then form each piece of dough into a ball, ensuring the surface is lightly oiled all around. Put the oiled balls back in the bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap then place in a warm place and leave for 5 hours.
After dough has rested, oil your counter top or a marble slab. Oil your hands again. Place a dough ball on the surface and flatten as much as possible (should be roughly dinner plate sized).
Add a little oil and oil a rolling pin. Roll out pastry until very thin (1/8″). It might break but that is ok.
When thin enough fold the sides in to form a rectangle. Fry each side on in a well buttered pan until pastry puffs up and becomes golden – about 1-2 minutes. Repeat with other dough balls. Serve while warm.