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December 08, 2007

The best bread 5-troubleshooting

I don't always agree with Maharishi Ayurveda, schools of thought have deviated somewhat in recent years, but here is something I wholeheartedly agree with.

While taking the time to make flatbreads for yourself or your family seems like a luxury in our fast paced way of life, the very act of making them can actually help correct this time pressure imbalance. The act of kneading dough is centuries old and actually involves using the stomach, chest, and arm muscles. So when you make your own bread, you not only add a healthy staple food to your diet, you also give some of your muscles a healthy workout!

It takes much time and patience to make chapati, so don't give up first time. The most common difficulty is that the bread is too tough, maybe because:
  • the dough was too dry, not enough water. Add water just a little at a time and mix it in before adding more. If you add too much water you can add more flour but this sometimes makes it more difficult to knead, so it's best to just add enough water at first
  • the dough was not kneaded for long enough, knead it well. If the wheat does not "break" let the dough rest for ten minutes and knead it again. Sometimes the addition of salt makes a tougher dough so leave the salt out to be sure
  • the chapati was cooked too long on the pan. It should just be sealed, and then cooked fully on the open flame.
Don't worry if they are not perfectly round, they may not puff up, but they should still taste alright. More practise will give you round chapati. More important is to get the chapati even. There shouldn't be thick spots and thin spots.

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