Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Methi Dhebra (Gujarathi flat bread)

Some people are hard to forget. Some are hard to remember. One such person in my life who is hard to forget is one of my friend's mother. I was introduced to Gujarathi food in her place and even when she is not around anymore, I remember her quite often. She was not only a great cook, but also a great person who always had a smile for everyone.

When I ate these dhebra for the first time, I instantly fell in love with them. Since I am from karnataka, jowar roti is not foreign to me. Dhebra is very similar since it uses bajra flour which is similar to jowar flour in its behaviour. Both have no gluten in them. But, the earthiness of bajra flour is more pronounce and many people do not like it because of this. I have made dhebra many times since then and I do not in any means say that this is authentic. These recipes change from one house to another just like dal does.

Methi leaves - cleaned and leaves chopped from one bunch. Either use stalks in something or discard
Bajra Flour - 2 cups
Whole wheat flour - 1 cup + more for rolling the dough
Salt - to taste
Red chilli powder - to taste (See Notes)
Turmeric - a pinch
Grated ginger - about 1 TBSP (optional)
Oil - 3 TBSP for the dough and more for cooking
Water - Very warm almost hot to mix the dough

In a large bowl, take both the flours, salt, turmeric, chilli powder, ginger if using. Mix in the oil. Start adding very warm water and make a stiff dough. Mix the methi leaves to this. Make sure this is not a very smooth dough since the hot water will make the dough sweat a bit and make it more watery. If that happens, simply add some more wheat flour, knead it and continue. Cover and let it stand for about 20 minutes. Make big lemon sized balls or small orange sized balls. Dust with plenty of flour and roll into circles. Circles won't come out perfect since the bajra flour has no gluten in them. It will also tear very easily. Keep dusting with flour and roll. Do not try to make them as thin as rotis. They will just crumble when you try to lift them. Heat a tawa and cook on hot tawa both sides with a bit of oil. Take it out when done and repeat the same with the rest of the dough.
Typically this is served with yogurt and some pickle. This can also be served as a tea time snack with some tea.

You can add finely chopped green chillies instead of red chilli powder. You can also add garlic with ginger to the dough. My friend's mother used to mix the dough with yogurt and some extra water and not water completely. I have done that way too, but prefer just plain water since when you mix it with hot water, the bajra flour tends to get soft resulting in easier handling of the dough.

Enjoy!! Pin It


  1. very healthy rotis...very new to me ...i love to try this :)

  2. we make very similar kind but add jowar and besan flour along with bajra..and add carom seeds.and crushed garlic,ginger and g.chillies...great travel food...love tht platter...love to hv @ bf time...full satisfying healthy meal...

  3. Healthy flat bread to enjoy without any guilt..

  4. Wow, that sounds lovely and I will surely make this variety when I am doing bajra roti again, which can be tonight :)

  5. Methi dhebra looks very delicious.
    I too tasted them first time at my Gujarati neighbours house.They are very tasty.

  6. wow these look delectable.We make them too but we call them bajra na thepla.Your platter look delicious.

  7. This is a new dish to me, though I make thepla sometimes. Sounds yumm!!

  8. Hi Champa
    From morning, and now past one hour I am browsing your blog!!
    I think you will be my teacher for the baking part. Wonderful recipes and with such a detailed explanation.
    Your other recipes are very special. Hats off to you for your work.
    Keep up the work.
    Following you.

  9. Quite good and detailed recipe steps.
    Please have a look into another version,



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