Aloo Kulcha

Aloo Kulcha

Indian cuisine has a huge range of breads but the only one people outside India are aware of is naan. And naan is the least likely bread to be made in an average Indian household, oh what an irony! The more popular everyday breads are roti and paratha, which are made with whole wheat. That is what we usually eat with our sabzi (spiced veggies) and dal (lentils).

Another well known Indian bread but not so common in the western world is kulcha. It is a leavened bread made without yeast. There are several versions of kulcha. The one we used to get on roadside in Delhi used to be very soft and I was so crazy about them! They remind me of college days because we ate kulcha and chole (spiced chickpeas) on a regular basis from a roadside thela (cart). And you guys know how much it used to cost? 7 Rs for regular plate and 10 Rs for a special one in which the guy put some butter on top. And 10 rs is like 0.15 dollars, so yeah dirt cheap and damn delicious. Those were the days! Writing this makes my mouth water, how I wish I was able to relive those days.

Aloo Kulcha Recipe

Anyway so I always thought that kulcha was supposed to be soft and then I went to Amritsar last year and tasted a very flaky kulcha which I absolutely loved too. The bottom line is that all kulchas are very delicious, it doesn’t matter how you make them. And when you stuff them with something like aloo (potato) they become even more appetizing.

To make aloo kulcha, you first need to make the dough. Now here’s the thing – few days back I tried this same recipe and stuffed the kulcha with paneer in stead of potato and it didn’t taste great. I used a lot of baking soda and that resulted in a very bitter taste :/ and so I modified the recipe again till I was happy with it. Now, I am more than happy with how my aloo kulcha turned out and excited to share the recipe with you guys!

Indian Aloo Kulcha

Restaurants in India use a clay oven known as tandoor to cook all these breads like roti, naan and kulcha. Since most people don’t have that at home, we use our regular tawa (skillet) to make kulcha. Basically we stick the kulcha on the tawa and then flip the tawa over direct heat. This sort of becomes like a mini tandoor and gives the bread that typical taste which we associate with tandoor breads.

We enjoyed this aloo kulcha with chole (chickpea curry). It’s basically great as such or with any curry of your choice!

 

Method

In a bowl whisk together flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda.

Make a well in the center and add milk, oil and yogurt to it.

Start adding water little by little, the dough will start coming together.

Aloo Kulcha Recipe-Step-1

Keep adding water and bringing the dough together with your hands. You will need approximately 3/4 to 1 cup water to knead this.

If the dough is sticking, apply some oil on your hands and knead to form a totally smooth dough.

Wet a clean kitchen cloth and squeeze out all the water from the cloth. Cover the dough with this damp cloth and let it rest for 2 hours at a warm place. You can let it sit for 4-6 hours if you have time. I put the bowl inside by oven with the oven light on.

Aloo Kulcha Recipe-Step-2

While the the dough is resting, prepare the filling. Boil the potatoes, mash them and set aside. To a small pan, add coriander and cumin seeds. Dry roast till you start getting a nice aroma, this will take approximately 2 minutes.

Remove from heat and grind the roasted seeds to a fine powder.

Take the mashed potatoes and to it add the roasted coriander and cumin powder that we just prepared. Also add chopped cilantro, amchur (dry mango powder), green chili, garam masala powder and salt. Mix till everything is well combined, the filling for the aloo kulcha is now ready. Taste the filling at this point and adjust to taste. [Tip: if you want you can add onion and ginger to the filling as well]

Aloo Kulcha Recipe-Step-3

After the dough has rested, it would have risen a bit [sorry forgot to take picture of the risen dough!]. Punch to release the air and divide the dough into 8-10 balls of equal size. Cover the dough balls with a damp cloth and let them rest for 15-20 minutes.

Take one of the dough balls and roll it in form of a circle using a rolling pin.

Place around 2 tablespoons of the potato filling in the center. Do not overfill.
Aloo Kulcha Recipe-Step-4

Bring all the edges of the rolled dough together to seal it.

Press with your fingers to flatten the dough ball.

Roll the dough again to a circle. I just used my hand here to flatten the dough but you can of course use a rolling pin. Do not roll it super thin. Wet your fingers and apply some water on one side of the kulcha.

Aloo Kulcha Recipe-Step-5

Place the kulcha on a heated tawa on medium heat (skillet), with the water side facing down. This way the side with water applied to it will stick to the tawa and won’t fall off when we flip the tawa.

Cook the kulcha for 2 minutes or till you start seeing some bubbles on top. At this point, flip the tawa upside down as shown in the picture. The kulcha won’t come off since it’s stuck to the tawa. Cook till this side gets golden brown in color.

Now carefully remove the kulcha from the tawa and put it over direct heat for few seconds. This step is optional.Aloo Kulcha Recipe-Step-6

Remove from heat, apply ghee or butter on top and serve aloo kulcha immediately with some chole or rajma on the side!

Aloo Kulcha

* I used 1 cup whole wheat and 2 cups all purpose flour for this recipe. The ones you get in restaurants are 100% all purpose flour so you can very well 3 cups of all purpose flour here.

* To make this vegan, use vegan yogurt in the dough and skip the ghee.

* You can also add chopped onion and ginger to the potato filling.

* The total cooking time includes 2 hours resting time of the dough.

Aloo Kulcha

Manali
Aloo Kulcha is leavened Indian Flatbread stuffed with spicy potato filling. Great with curries!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 2 hrs 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 2 hrs 30 mins
Servings 8 aloo kulcha
Calories 259 kcal

Ingredients
  

Dough

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons yogurt
  • 1.5 tablespoons milk
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • water to knead the dough [around ¾ cup]

Filling

  • 3-4 potatoes medium
  • 2-3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • teaspoon amchur powder dry mango powder
  • 2 green chili finely chopped [or to taste]
  • ¼ teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 1.5 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • salt to taste

ghee or butter, to serve

    Instructions
     

    Make the dough

    • In a bowl whisk together flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda.
    • Make a well in the center and add milk, oil and yogurt to it.
    • Start adding water little by little, the dough will start coming together.
    • Keep adding water and bringing the dough together with your hands. You will need approximately 3/4 to 1 cup water to knead this.
    • If the dough is sticking, apply some oil on your hands and knead to form a totally smooth dough.
    • Wet a clean kitchen cloth and squeeze out all the water from the cloth. Cover the dough with this damp cloth and let it rest for 2 hours at a warm place.

    Make the filling

    • Boil the potatoes, mash them and set aside.
    • To a small pan on medium heat, add coriander and cumin seeds. Dry roast till you start getting a nice aroma, this will take approximately 2 minutes.
    • Remove from heat and grind the roasted seeds to a fine powder.
    • Take the mashed potatoes and to it add the roasted coriander and cumin powder that we just prepared. Also add chopped cilantro, amchur (dry mango powder), green chili, garam masala powder and salt.
    • Mix till everything is well combined, the filling for the aloo kulcha is now ready. Taste the filling at this point and adjust to taste.

    Make the kulcha

    • After the dough has rested, it would have risen a bit. Punch to release the air.
    • Divide the dough into 8-10 balls of equal size. Cover the dough balls with a damp cloth and let them rest for 15-20 minutes.
    • Take one of the dough balls and roll it in form of a circle using a rolling pin.
    • Place around 2 tablespoons of the potato filling in the center. Do not overfill.
    • Bring all the edges of the rolled dough together to seal it and then press with your fingers to flatten the dough ball.
    • Roll the dough again to a circle. I just used my hand here to flatten the dough but you can of course use a rolling pin. Do not roll it super thin.
    • Wet your fingers and apply little water on one side of the kulcha.
    • Place the kulcha on a heated tawa (skillet), with the water side facing down. This way the side with water applied to it will stick to the tawa and won't fall off when we flip the tawa.
    • Cook the kulcha for 2 minutes or till you start seeing some bubbles on top. At this point, flip the tawa upside down as shown in the picture above. The kulcha won't come off since it's stuck to the tawa. Cook till this side gets golden brown in color.
    • Now carefully remove the kulcha from the tawa and put it over direct heat for few seconds.
    • Remove from heat, apply ghee or butter on top and serve immediately.

    Nutrition

    Calories: 259kcalCarbohydrates: 48gProtein: 7gFat: 4gSodium: 303mgPotassium: 489mgFiber: 5gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 5IUVitamin C: 10.6mgCalcium: 72mgIron: 5mg
    Tried this recipe?Mention @cookwithmanali or tag #cookwithmanali!

     Aloo Kulcha

    Aloo Kulcha Collage-nocwm

    48 thoughts on “Aloo Kulcha

    1. What an interesting way of cooking/baking this bread, Manali! I am a bread fanatic, so of course I am intrigued by this kulcha. It looks like a simple (and delicious!) side dish…I might need to whip up a batch soon!

    2. Manali, the kulchas look delicious! I love paneer kulcha and i always order that whenever i eat at an Indian restaurant. U know I used to get confused with parathas and kulchas.. now I know the difference.. thanks for sharing dear!! have a fabulous weekend! 😀

      1. haha but seriously Jen, can you think of having a super delicious lunch in less than 25 cents here in US? No right? That’s possible only in India! 😀

    3. Great flavors Manali! Love it! You are so right, naan is so popular everywhere, I was not aware that it is not made so often in Indian households. Pinning!

    4. Manali, that is so interesting! why do you think naan is so popular here? I’ve never heard of kulcha, but that’s why I love reading your blog! I’m also getting some education on Indian cuisine! this kulcha looks absolutely delicious!

      1. Thanks Alice and I have no idea! actually naan is popular in India, it’s there in every restaurant, every wedding and parties. it’s just that it’s not made in an average Indian household, partially because it’s made in a tandoor (clay oven) and no one has it in their homes!

    5. Ohhh as always, this looks so incredibly delicious, Manali!! 🙂 I’ll definitely make this and I’ll just try replacing the yogurt with soy yogurt. Thanks for the great recipe! 🙂

    6. HI Manali,

      Found out ur blog very recently!!!!!!& i m hooked already!!!! & saved a couple of ur recipes!!!& i m thinking of making Kulchas on Sunday!!!!
      & i agree i have never seen anyone make Naan at home here!!!lol and i always have to tell my friends in the US that i don’t know hw to make naan when they asi m really glad that i found ur blog!!!!

      1. Hi Pallavi, I am glad you found me too! 🙂 Hope you give the kulcha recipe a try, let me know how they turned out! and yes lol it’s such a myth isn’t it? who makes naan in India ghar pe? like no one!

        1. i know!!!!i also know that UP has its own breads too!!!& since u have talked abt being from UP do u know any & can you share recipes if u make any??

    7. 5 stars
      Hello Manali

      Just hit upon your site, I was looking for a different recipe for making bhaturas. I am a chef myself and ran a catering business for 11 years. I live in Winnipeg, Canada. I came here in 1972 upon being invited by the Government of Canada. Before that, I had come to Yale University in the US, after winning the world’s most prestigious and lucrative Fulbright scholarship. I hold three master’s degrees in Physics from Yale, Math and Chem from Arizona State and Education from the University of Manitoba here in Winnipeg, the seventh largest city in Canada. My mandate was to help improve the quality of science and math teaching across Canada on which I worked for 11 years also. I was contacted by Canadian Embassy in Washington.

      I am a connoisseur of Indian food and never studied cooking or read any book. Call it a God given talent and gift. Have been cooking Indian food for almost 55 years. Supervised the first wedding party food when 12 years old. catered to 176 functions, largest being 746 persons. I am a strong vegetarian but do cook meat dishes also. Never touch meat with my hands. My wife used to do it. She left me in 1998 after battling terminal ovaruian cancer in 1998. That’s when I stopped catering.

      I found your website pages to be the most comprehensive, leaving nothing to imagination with phonographs and more details one could imagine. Take it from someone who, like you, knows food inside out. Not even the minutest details are left out. You are to be congratulated for your expertise and devotion to what you are doing. My heartiest and well deserved greetings and congratulations.

      I will certaily recommend this site to all my friends. In most cases, I don’t need them myself, but everyone has a different way of presenting the recipe, and yours is the best.

      1. Hello Sir, thank you so much for taking out the time to leave feedback on my blog. I am so encouraged by your positive words. Thank you so much! I am so honored that you like my recipes!

    8. Hallo,
      This looks so tempting, can I make them on oven or induction stove? If yes, then how? I don’t have a gas stove 🙁

          1. heat is coming from the bottom, so it will work, just flip the tawa as directed. I am not asking to put the kulcha directly on flame, for that you would need stove.

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