Quinoa – Carrot Paratha/Flatbread

There are about 9 kinds of whole grains in my currently-understocked-pantry, as I am writing this post. I barely eat white rice anymore; just twice or thrice a month. No, this is not a fashion statement (unlike the “I don’t watch Indian movies, only ingleeesh” kind), but more of a health-conscious one. Like family heirlooms, both our family trees have generous genetic ailments waiting to be bestowed upon us. No thank you (not so for the diamonds. Am I clear?).

Discovering the world of whole grains and their various cooking methods is such a delight. But once in a while, we do long for our childhood favourites. There are some dishes that we grew up with and the sight, smell and taste bring back a gush of memories from our early days. Now I am learning to incorporate the whole grains in Indian recipes. It doesn’t turn out well all the time. There are some bad days (as with any cooking experiments) and then there are days with outstanding results. Quinoa paratha is one such dish.

Quinoa, the wonder grain

This recipe is an extrapolation of this upma. I kept the seasoning to a minimum just like the upma. Tastewise, these parathas weren’t any different than the usual wheat ones, but the addition of quinoa did make them soft and supple. I am sure there will be more 'whole-grain-flatbreads' from my kitchen.

Before going to the recipe, I am thrilled to announce that Margot at Coffee and Vanilla has nominated me for this month’s Inspiring Food Photography. I have some tough competition with fellow nominees, Michelle of Green Gourmet and Leemei of My Cooking Hut. If you have enjoyed your visits here, please hop over there and vote for me (yeah, shameless self promotion. I know!).

Quinoa – Carrot Paratha/Flatbread
(makes 16-18 medium sized parathas)

Ingredients

Quinoa – ¾ cup, uncooked
Whole wheat flour – 3 to 3½ cups
Carrot – 1 cup, finely shredded
Onion – ¼ cup, shredded
Green chilli – 1, minced
Carom seeds/ajwain – 1 tbsp
Cilantro – ¼ cup, minced
Salt

Oil – for cooking

Method

Cook quinoa with 1 cup of water. You can either do this using a pressure cooker for 2 whistles, or on stovetop. Fluff, and let cool, but not completely.

I made the dough using food processor. Using the shredder attachment, shred carrots, onion and green chillies. Remove the attachment, fit the blade, add warm quinoa and salt, and pulse everything together, until it forms a solid mass. Add 2 cups of flour and pulse until the dough forms into a ball. Turn the dough onto a big bowl or working area, sprinkle cilantro and carom seeds on top of it. Add flour ¼ cup at a time until the dough isn’t sticky anymore. Knead for 5 more minutes until it is soft and elastic.

If you don’t have a food processor, prepare vegetables separately, grind the cooked quinoa coarsely and proceed as mentioned above, until you are left with a soft and elastic dough.

Cover with a moist towel and let the dough rest for 20 to 30 minutes. Prepare vegetables or gravy to go along with the paratha. I served mine with Ashwini's Green Peas Curry. I have made this curry with different legumes. It tastes absolutely fantastic every single time.

When ready, pinch a lemon sized ball of dough, (about 2 inch), dust and roll on a well floured surface, as thin as you can. Cook on preheated flat skillet, with a light drizzle of oil on one side. The parathas are done when they develop light brown spots on both sides.

These flatbreads were naturally soft. But I find cooking any kind of roti/paratha (the non-stuffed kind) over medium-high heat ensures the soft texture. You have to be careful not to burn the roti, by flipping every 30 seconds. These parathas were done just after 2 flips.

This is my second entry for Vegan Ventures, round 2. This event celebrates the National Vegan month, November. More whole grain recipes can be found at JFI - Whole Grains roundup.

26 comments:

Raaga said...

Looks very nice... and I love all pictures where your hand can be seen :-) I could never allow my hands to be photographed ;-) they're very ugly!!

I wish I could say we eat white rice twice or thrice a month! We still eat it 3 times a week. Soon... soon!

Nags said...

I have been lookin for a kadai like that in Singapore, the one you have served subzi in. No luck yet. Or maybe I should say nothing that won't wipe me off 50 bucks!

SMN said...

Suganya loved the pic and i dont thint we quinoa in India.. never came across

anudivya said...

Awesome presentation. I recently have started cooking with Quinoa... like it a lot.

Divya Vikram said...

They look too good Suganya.

Mahimaa's kitchen said...

super healthy dish! lovely pics as usual :)

MeetaK said...

I adore quinoa! it's almost replaced couscous in my kitchen! I like the use of it here - very inspiring!

Nirmala said...

that looks fantastic! And yeah my votes are for u dear! What would u call Quinoa in tamil ?

Lakshmi Venkatesh said...

That was a nice quinoa recipe. Urges me to try it.

mycookinghut said...

The bread looks really good. And so as the curry.. :)

Soma said...

I have never used Quinoa before. These look soo good. I often make my dough with whatever veg i have at hand. I need to try Quinoa..

Lisa said...

I'm always looking for new ways to use quinoa and I adore paratha! Yet another tempting recipe from your kitchen. Thanks for sharing this.

Nina Timm said...

I am trying my hand at all the interesting grains at the moment. This is stunning, the recipe and the photography. Well done!

vidhas said...

Looks very nice. All photographs are wonderful .Collect something from my blog Suganya.

Hillary said...

Great recipe! I had a quinoa risotto when I was in Argentina - it was delicious. The flatbread is very creative.

Susan from Food Blogga said...

I am taken with the photo of the quinoa in the hands.

Sunshinemom said...

I haven't been able to control my rice fixture! Very innovative cooking!

gaga said...

What a great way to make paratha. So healthy too. I love quinoa and paratha, yum!

my comfort food said...

This looks really good, I have Quinoa in my pantry that I had bought sometime ago, other then salads I didn't know how to use it. This one is bookmarked. Thanks

Aparna said...

Any kind of paratha is always welcome in our home.:)
We don't get quinoa in India, but its a nice thing to incorporate as much whole grain and foods in our diets, especially when, as you said, we have family bequeaths of health history!

Cynthia said...

You have 9 kinds of whole grains currently and yet you say the pantry is understocked. Surely you mean understocked of other things and not whole grains? :) Don't yell at me, please.

Marija said...

Very inspiring photography! Congratulations on winning DMBLGIT!

Divina Pe said...

Beautiful photos. I would love to try try flatbread. Thanks so much for the recipe. I think I could taste the flatbread now...:)

Karthi said...

Excellent Pictures. I would like to know as what do you call Quinoa in Tamil. Pls.

Suganya said...

Karthi, Quinoa is a North American grain. I don't suppose it has a Tamil name, yet. And, its hard to find in India, except for a few private distributors.

Nanda1 said...

Quinoa called in tamil thinai.. It is ancient indian food.. Thenum thinaiyum (Honey and Quinoa) Kurinji nilathil vaazhum makkaloda main food.. 

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