Tips for Paranthas, Puris, Breads and Snacks

Tips for Paranthas, Puris, Breads and Snacks
  • Rather than using food colors, use a mixture of limewater and turmeric to get (almost) tandoori color.

  • A good thing about most paranthas is that you can half roast and pile them and do the final roast just before serving.

  • Crisp puris – At the time of kneading add a little suji to the wheat flour.

  • Place rolled puris in the fridge for ten minutes before frying them, they will consume less oil and will be crisper.

  • To make puris tastier add four to five slices of bread soaked in water, to the dough.

  • Puri may be rolled and placed between well-rinsed wet muslin cloth for at least an hour ahead. Fry them freshly before serving.

  • An easy way to roll out Bhatura – Roll out each ball of dough into a small puri and cover with a damp cloth. At the time of serving roll each ‘Puri’ into the desired size; & then fry them till done. This is an easier way to roll out the Bhatura.

  • Keep chapatis soft & fresh by place a few pieces of ginger in the container.

  • Stale Chapatis – Just wrap them in a clean cloth and pack them in an airtight container that fits into your pressure cooker. Cook it for two whistles and serve fresh.

  • Store an opened bag of flour in an airtight container or plastic bag to maintain moisture content.

  • To test if the consistency of your Wada batter is correct, drop a little batter into a cup of water. If it floats it is ready to be fried.

  • If noodles/pasta has to be used after some time, then refresh the boiled noodles in cold water and drain. This way they will not stick to each other.

  • Boil noodles, macaroni, or pasta with a little bit of oil till tender and drain. This way they will not stick to each other.

  • Use crushed vermicelli to coat your cutlets for a change. The cutlets will have a nest-like appearance.

  • When boiling potatoes for cutlets add the salt to the water itself as potatoes absorb salt better this way.

  • Add a little malai (cream) to the dhokla batter to make them softer and richer.

  • In the winter if you add a little fruit salt to the idli batter it will help ferment faster and also make the idlis softer.

  • While grinding the batter for idlis replace 1/5 quantity of rice with pressed rice (Poha). This will make the idlis fluffier.

  • Add a little sugar to the dosa mixture to make them brown nicely and become crisp.

  • If you add a little-boiled tur dal to the besan batter it will make the batata Vadas crispier.
  • Crispy Pakodas – Add a little cornflour to the gram flour while mixing the dough.

  • Powder vermicelli or sago and roll patties or croquettes in this powder before frying, to get a crisp crunchy cover. At the same time, much less oil will be absorbed while frying.

  • Save Oil – When you begin frying “Puris, Pakodas,” add a pinch of salt to the oil, and will absorb less oil.

  • Grilling -It saves cooking time and energy & is healthier than frying, and usually involves less clean-up.

  • French fries – At the very first blanch & cut potatoes in hot water. Then deep-fry in very hot oil till crisp. remember do not add too many potatoes at once to the oil as this causes the temperature of the oil to come down and all that you will get is soggy & greasy fries.

  • Adding olive oil to pizza dough creates a crisp with a tender interior. Swab the top of the dough before adding toppings to keep the dough from drying out.

  • The most convenient warm place in which a batter OR dough can rise is the inside of a switched-off oven with the light on. Rise your Idli, dosa, khaman batter, Naan, kulcha, and Bhatura dough by this method.

  • To make dosas more crispy add half a teaspoon of fenugreek seeds (methi dana) to the lentil and rice mixture while soaking.

  • Never beat idli batter too much because the air which has already been incorporated during fermentation is lost and results in not-so-soft idlis.

  • While making chaats or Bhel use cornflakes as a substitute for sev or papdis. It is available everywhere and gives the same crunchiness to a dish.

  • No fresh bread – Just keep leftover hardened bread on the lid of a pan containing hot water. The slices will become soft in no time or Wrap it in a damp cloth for about a minute, then place in preheated 350 F oven for about 20 minutes. Serve warm.

  • Stale bread – Sprinkle a little milk over it and place it in a moderately hot oven for 15 minutes. It will regain its taste & crispness.

  • When making bread, substitute non-dairy creamer instead of dry milk.

  • Instead of throwing away bread heels or leftover dry bread, use them to make bread crumbs & store them in the freezer.

  • Unbleached all-purpose flour is much better & more nutritious than the bleached flour.

  • If you freeze baker’s yeast, it will last indefinitely.

  • When baking buns or bread, place rising dough in the oven with the light on — the temperature is perfect and the area is free of drafts.

  • While making bread, warm the ingredients in the oven before kneading the dough. It will help make the dough softer and the bread too will have a better texture.

  • Cut fresh bread with a hot knife.

  • Make your own croutons. Butter both sides of two or three slices of bread, season as desired and cut into small cubes. Set cubes on a cookie sheet and heat them in a 375 F oven for about 15 minutes or until lightly browned.

  • If you run out of bread crumbs, you can use dry cereals by putting them through a blender or food processor.

  • To make breadcrumbs, place pieces on dry bread into a plastic bag and roll with a rolling pin.

  • While making burgers, make a hole in the center of the burger about the size of a dime. This allows the burger to cook from the inside as well as the outside and will cook more evenly. You bet it tastes really good.

  • For light pancakes and waffles, replace the liquid in the batter with club soda.

  • Crepes can be made ahead of time, frozen in meal-size amounts, and reheated in the microwave.

  • Warm hot dog buns at the top of a double boiler, while wieners cook at the bottom.

  • Stale rolls can be revived if you spray them lightly with cold water, place in a paper bag or wrap in foil and warm them in a 375 F oven for about five minutes.

  • Re-heat stale buns and rolls by placing them in a wet brown paper bag and putting it in the oven at 350 F for seven to ten minutes.

  • Makeup breadcrumbs ahead of time and store them for months in plastic bags or containers in the freezer.

  • While presenting snacks, pay attention to the color combinations. Like top a pale green cucumber slice with white cheese.

Suggested Read: Unhealthy Foods For Children

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Simmi Kamboj

Simmi Kamboj is the Founder and Administrator of Ritiriwaz, your one-stop guide to Indian Culture and Tradition. She had a passion for writing about India's lifestyle, culture, tradition, travel, and is trying to cover all Indian Cultural aspects of Daily Life.