Hard, dry, bitter or not puffy Chapatis are part of the cooking journey for almost every new cook. Even though chapati is the most commonly used bread in Indian households, they can be a pain to make.
Here are some of the possible reasons which can make the chapatis hard, dry, bitter and not puffy-
Reasons for Dry or Hard Chapatis:
- The dough used is not of the right consistency. The consistency needs to be the same as that of play dough the kids use for playing. If the dough was dry or stiffer than that then the chapatis will be dry. You can tell that your dough is dry if you cannot make a smooth dough ball without any cracks in it.
- If you did not let the dough rest well for 15 mins and started using it right away then the gluten has not formed well in the chapati making it hard.
- In an unevenly rolled dough, the thicker edges can cause uneven cooking and be hard.
- If you flip the chapati on the tawa multiple times instead of ONLY once then it will lose moisture and tends to become hard.
- The pan needs to be at the right temperature, If it’s cold then the chapatis will become hard.
- If the pan is very hot, it will cause roti to burn making it hard.
- Make sure that you use whole wheat flour and not all purpose flour. The all purpose flour makes the chapatis stretchy and chewy. This is the flour we buy. You can buy this or any other whole wheat flour and that should help with the chewiness.
- Cooking chapatis on low heat for a long time can cause them to lose their moisture content, making them dry and brittle. When cooking them make sure you do not cook the first side for more than 15 sec and the second side for more than 30 sec.
- After cooking the chapatis need to be kept in a covered container so that the moisture does not escape out of the hot chapatis. If stored in open, they tend to become brittle and dry.
Reasons for Not Puffy Chapatis:
10. The dough needs to be well done, rested and pliable. If the dough is very dry or sticky the chapatis will not puff up.
11. If the chapati has been rolled very thick then it will not puff on cooking. Make sure you roll them thin and evenly.
12. While flipping the roti on the tawa be careful, if you puncture the roti then it will not fluff up.
13. There should not be any folds or cuts on the chapati as it will prevent them from not puffing like a balloon.
14. If the pan is very hot, the chapatis will burn. This will puncture them and stop them from puffing.
Reason for Bitterness in Chapatis:
15. Whole wheat grain’s bran layer contains phenolic acid and tannins that make the bran bitter to taste. If the wheat flour used for making chapatis is high on bran then it can make the chapatis taster bitter. The best way to avoid bitterness is to make chapatis with husked wheat flour which does not have high bran content.