Bizarrely I did not try this in Kolkata but in Fort Cochin Kerala, this is by no means Keralan food at all but I was advised by a chef friend that I visit a particular restaurant called Dal Roti. I had spent a long time in Varkarla, Kerala eating fabulous coconut based fish curries and to be quite honest that suited me, I had met a local chef who told me about this particular restaurant, he had explained that the owner was his mentor and had taught him to cook, I was told that if I like good food this would be a pilgrimage for me, but the food is north Indian. The restaurant itself is down a dusty lane which feels in the middle of no where, the restaurant much like most of the best restaurants that I have visited looked rough around the edges, and when we arrived we were told to leave and come back in an hour as it was ramadan, none of this put me off because I was desperate to see what all the fuss was about, that was possibly one of the best decisions that I have ever made, not only was it the best indian food I have ever tasted but it has made such an impact on how I cook Indian food that I will forever try to match the quality of food I tasted that day.
I cooked a huge batch of kati rolls for some friends for dinner and have since been hounded for the recipe, so here it is guys, ENJOY!
For the Paratha:
You will need:
1 cup of white bread flour
1/2 cup of chapatti flour
2 tbsp of vegetable oil
a pinch of salt
Blend all of all of the above ingredients together and knead for ten minutes until you have a soft pliable dough. Place to one side.
For the green chutney:
1/2 cup of mint
1/2 cup of coriander
4 green chillies (seeds and all)
1 tbsp of caster sugar
3 tsp of maldon seasalt, if you are using table salt reduce the amount
1 cup of white onion
6 tsp of lemon juice
3 tsp of water
Blend all the above items in a food processor until very fine.
For the chicken filling:
500g of boneless and skinless chicken thighs, diced.
1 pureed red onion
2 tbsp of oil
2 medium diced tomatoes
1 tbsp of garlic and ginger paste (from a jar)
1/2 tsp of chilli powder or cayenne
1/2 tsp of black pepper powder (use Indian pepper powder only it is totally different)
a pinch of cumin powder
1 tsp of chaat masala seasoning
30ml of lemon juice
2 tsp of maldon salt
a pinch of chat masala to finish
Firstly puree the onion by blending it in a food processor until fine, you can add a little water to help it blend. Place a large frying pan on a high heat and fry the onion puree in the oil until golden brown, add the garlic and ginger paste, chilli powder, chat masala, pepper powder and cumin, fry for five minutes then add the tomatoes, cook the tomatoes until they have completely broken down, this should take 5-10 minutes, you can help the tomatoes by pressing them down with the back of a wooden spoon.
Add the chicken and salt and cook the chicken on a low heat for 20-30 minutes until the chicken is super soft (chicken thighs do not dry out). Finish the chicken with the lemon juice and an extra pinch of chaat masala, place to one side.
(other things you will need)
Whisk up 3 eggs with a pinch of salt and pepper powder.
1 sliced red onion
To assemble the Kati roll split your dough into four and roll each ball out on a floured work surface until they are super thin roughly 30cm in diameter. Place a very large frying pan on the heat and add a tbsp of oil, place the paratha into the pan and whilst one side is cooking pour a quarter of the omelette mixture onto the other side of the paratha bread and spread out the egg, allow it to cook for a minute or until bubbles begin to appear in the bread, flip over and allow the egg to cook until the bread puffs up, remove from the pan.