Plain Chapati

Afsari Jahan

Bay Ridge, Brooklyn

"Chapati is a type of flat bread that is a common accompaniment to Bangladeshi meals. Pieces are torn off and used as a scoop to eat many dishes. It’s made with atta flour, a type of whole-wheat flour made from durum wheat. It’s a flour with less gluten, which is great for rolling out strong thin sheets of dough. It can be purchased in Indian and other South Asian markets." — Asfari Jahan 


  • 1 1/2 cups atta flour, plus more for rolling
  • Pinch fine salt
  • About 2/3 cup water


Add the flour and salt to a large mixing bowl. Mix with your hands, and slowly add the water in stages, until the dough comes together and picks up all the flour in the bowl. If the dough is too dry, add more water, tablespoon by tablespoon, until it forms a ball. Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface until it is malleable and pliant, about 5 minutes.

Divide the dough into 6 equal portions slightly bigger than golf balls. Knead one portion into a ball and flatten into a small disc. Using your fingertips, lift the outer edges of the disc and pinch the dough into the center by closing your fingers into each other. Flatten the dough into a disc again using the palm of your hand. Continue until the edges of the disc are round and smooth. Repeat with the remaining dough portions.

On a lightly floured surface, roll the discs out into round sheets with a rolling pin until they are between 7 and 8 inches in diameter and even throughout.

Heat a cast-iron or other heavy-bottomed pan over high heat. (Note, if using something other than cast iron, your cooking time will be slightly longer.) Place one sheet of dough in the center of the pan. Flip when the dough becomes lighter in color and small air pockets begin to appear on the surface, about 15 seconds. Flip again when the chapati forms bigger air bubbles and puffs up, another 15 seconds. Flip a third time and press down gently on the air bubbles with your spatula and continue to cook for about another 15 seconds. Remove the chapati from the pan and repeat with the remaining dough sheets.

Store in a colander covered with a dish towel until ready to serve


3 to 4 servings