Mamta's Kitchen

Forum Thread - Keeping Chapatties soft?

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male cook, on 14/3/2017 03:35am

initially i used to belive that water makes roti soft , but as i read more and do more experiment i realized mixture of water and oil ( emulsion ) makes roti soft , that is because where as water makes roti soft , oil trap that water inside roti because roti has to go through heat and cool cycle so that will evaporate water inside it , same happens when you microwave roti without sealing inside a air tight container , it makes roti as hard as rock , so moral of the story ? use wise mixture of water and oil to make roti , also cover the roti in oil coating by putting more oil when you store it ( inside or outside refridgerator ) , to that end whenever roti need to be heat in microwave do so in airtight container and put some water drops inside container to produce steam, also using milk to make roti will be the best instead of oil this is because milk is natural emulsion , obviously quality of dough makes difference too , however key players are same

Mamta, on 15/3/2017 07:15pm

Interesting theory! I never add oil or Milk to my chapatti dough and my chapatties are always soft. I have never seen any north Indian, the main chapatti eaters of India, adding oil to chapatti dough. To paratha and pooro dough yes, but to chapatti dough, no.

I know that in some regions of India they do add oil, but it is not the norm.

The trick is to make the dough soft, cook on a hot (not over hot) gridle, put them in a stack and keep them in an airtight container or wrapped in aluminium foil.

Hope this helps😀

geetika, on 19/3/2018 06:20am

I know that earlier my grand mother added milk to make the dough of chapaties and parathas.

I dont understand though how they last longer?

They remail soft ofcourse

Any ideas?

Mamta, on 20/3/2018 06:56am

Milk in dough will keep them soft, perhaps because of the fat content of it, just like adding oil/ghee. I am not sure how it will keep it fresher longer, although I remember my grandmother doing the same for poories and parathas made for travelling.

Chuffa, on 29/3/2018 07:10pm

Even when the roti are hard, I lightly soak them in water, then microwave them for 15 seconds or warm through in the oven for two minutes. Works every time.

Mamta, on 30/3/2018 05:54am

...or you can lightly pan fry them on both sides, they make pretty reasonable parathas.

Neha, on 3/4/2019 02:31pm

This is a trick I learned as a student reheating pizza the next day (I’ve grown past that!) but the trick to microwaving and not removing all the moisture is to take a paper towel and saturate it with water and place it in the corner of the microwave. This effectively steams the chapatti/ bread and you get warm, soft rotis without any sogginess from direct wetting.

Mamta, on 14/4/2019 01:47pm

Although I never heat Chapatties or bread of any kind in a microwave oven, I must try this trick of yours. Thanks for sharing 🙂

Manju Narula, on 16/5/2020 09:05am

To keep rotis soft the next day...put rotis in a zip lock bag n seal.Mirowave it for 20 to 25 secs.

Voila!! You have hot n soft rotis ready.

Remove one roti at a time as needed.Rest let them be in the bag as it keeps warm.

Do try out n let me know..I found this solution after struggling for a long time with this problem.

Mamta, on 18/5/2020 07:39am

Sounds like a great ideas, but I have now stopped buying plastic bags, using up the last ones I have, so not a solution for me. But thank you for sharing. Plastic bags/cling film do make life easy for many, many things, but it is killing our wildlife and planet at great speed, so trying to stop it's use as much as possible.


Neha, on 10/7/2020 11:36pm

Adding oil to roti dough is an old technique to make chapattis soft until the next day (according to my mother in law in India).

My family is Kenyan-Indian and nearly every Kenyan family I know adds oil as we typically don’t eat thin phulkas and will eat cold chapatti with chai the next day!

Sonal shah, on 2/8/2020 07:46am

C... ka pagoda

Can you share details of your roti rolling appliance/ roti roller please?I have severe spine issues so this could be of great help for ?

Sonal shah, on 2/8/2020 07:46am

C... ka pagoda

Can you share details of your roti rolling appliance/ roti roller please?I have severe spine issues so this could be of great help for ?

Mamta, on 3/8/2020 12:39pm

I use an ordinary rolling pin. But you can use a poori or tortilla press. Electric tortilla maker is supposed to be good to, though I have not used it myself.

There is an electric, fully automatic chapatti maker now available, but I haven’t seen one in use myself.

I do feel your pain, I too am getting arthritis in my wrists now!


Ruth Whetsel, on 13/11/2020 05:16pm

Hello...I didn't know where else to put my appreciation for your site, so I'm here where I don't belong. It's just that I find your recipes so very helpfully written and I wanted to thank you. Hoping to try many more of your recipes beyond the one I'm using now (for a besan pancake). Great! Thanks!

Mamta, on 14/11/2020 12:03pm

Good morning Ruth Whetsel

Thank you for your comment, much appreciated. Not being a professional cook, I have always written the recipe that would make sense to me. I am happy to know that you find them helpful.

Happy Diwali to you ??


PS I can mostly be found on Mamta’s Kitchen linked fb page

Tamilselvi , on 15/1/2024 09:39pm

Add milk, little butter when making dough

Leave it for 2 hours

Then make chapatis

And role it in a aluminum foil when hot.

It will stay soft until lunch.

I packed this way for my sons

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