What's Your Favorite Indian Bread?

Hira Shaikh
March 31, 2023
 min read

Indian cuisine is bread heaven. Along with over-the-top delicious rice, meat, and vegetable dishes, Indian cuisine is known for its leavened and unleavened flatbreads.  Indian bread is made on the stovetop, baked, fried, and roasted on a tandoor (clay oven). Indian bread is recognized for making Indian cuisine extraordinary and unique from other cuisines around the globe. Indian curries and gravies are incomplete without bread. Indian bread enhances the cuisine to a substantial degree. 

Indian cuisine is known to be versatile, diverse, and regional. There are over a dozen different types of Indian bread.  In India, they vary from region to region. Every region has its own twist to the classic. We have compiled a list of popular Indian bread and how you should eat them.

1. Roti

Roti is also known as chapati.  An everyday staple in every Indian household. Roti can be eaten with just about anything. This round-shaped unleavened flatbread is made with simple ingredients like whole wheat flour, salt, and water on a flat tawa (griddle). Nothing beats the taste of garam (hot) roti off the stove. Fresh rotis are available at Patel’s fresh kitchen located inside the Patel Brothers store.

2. Paratha

Golden-Brown in color, this crisp and flaky delicacy is everyone’s favorite weekend breakfast item. Paratha is often dipped in chai and eaten. Additionally, paratha is paired with a veggie omelet. This square-shaped unleavened flatbread is made with whole wheat flour, salt, water, and ghee. The dough is divided into medium-sized balls and rolled with a rolling pin. It is then layered with ghee and shallow fried on each side.  

Stuffed parathas come in delicious variations like aloo (potato) mooli (radish), gobi (cauliflower), and cheese. Stuffed parathas are often accompanied by achar, yogurt, and various chutneys.

3. Puri

Puri is a soft and fluffy fried unleavened bread made with flour, water, salt, and oil. This round-shaped dough inflates when it strikes hot oil. The result is a puffed-up golden crispy ball. Puri is commonly served for breakfast along with chana masala and potato curry. 

Puri is often eaten with famous Indian desserts like halwa and kheer. Puri is a popular flatbread that is a must-have during religious festivals and special occasions.

4. Naan

Naan is the most popular leavened flatbread in India. The dough is prepared with all-purpose flour, yeast, milk, baking powder, baking soda, and yogurt. Soft and buttery bread is the only way to describe it.  The dough is divided into baseball-shaped balls and placed into a tandoor oven. 

The varieties of naan are plentiful and some popular types include butter naan, onion naan, chili cheese naan, and keema (minced meat) naan.

5. Dosa

Dosa is a thin lacey crepe made with fermented rice and lentil batter.  It’s a giant crispy crepe and is a breakfast favorite in South India. The most popular type of dosa is masala dosa, a savory crepe filled with spicy potato mash made with potatoes, spices, onions, and curry leaves. Other varietes of dosas include neer dosa, rava dosa, and pesarattu dosa. Dosa is served with vegetable sambar and coconut chutney. Dosa is a delicious creation.

6. Bhakri

Bhakri is among the most popular bread in Gujarat, Rajasthan, and Maharashtra. It is made with millet flour cooked over a hot tava (griddle) and brushed with ghee. Bhakri is a specialty dish that is hearty and nutritious. Bhakri is thicker than a roti.  Bhakri is accompanied by yogurt, thecha chutney, or baingan bharta (eggplant curry).

7. Thepla

Methi thepla is the most common and is freshly made daily at Patel’s Fresh Kitchen inside the store. Methi thepla is made by using methi leaves (fenugreek leaves) and a combination of flour such as wheat flour and gram flour and various spices and herbs.  Other types of thepla include mooli and lauki (bottle gourd). Thepla is served with yogurt, chutney, or pickle (achar).  Thepla is the go-to flatbread to carry when traveling. 

Additionally, each of these bread tastes delicious on its own. Bread is an essential part of an Indian meal. The heart of Indian cuisine lies in its delightful variety of bread. The diversity of Indian bread is a true testament to the richness and greatness of Indian cuisine.

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