Saturday, November 17, 2012

Chickpeas stuffed braided bread

A few years back, bread to me, meant a packet of Modern or Britannia white bread picked up from the neighbouring store. That was before blogging happened. Now, I know that bread isn't just bread - there is whole wheat bread, there is multi grain bread, focaccia, no-knead bread - the variety is endless. The simple, short term bread encompasses a whole world within it.
I am amazed that I am able to bake good bread at home and that I have become more and more adventurous by trying out my hand at different kinds of bread. I am participating in the Blogging Marathon this month, and the theme I have chosen for this week is Cooking with chickpeas. I was certain that I did not want to take the well travelled path and make chole or kadala curry. I racked my brain to see how I could come up with something 'different' and that's when the idea of this stuffed bread was born. The basic bread recipe I have used is the same as the one I have used in my Iyengar bakery style stuffed buns.

What you need:
For the bread :
Maida/All purpose flour - 2 cups (heaped)
Vanaspati / vegetable shortening - 3 tbsp
Yogurt - 1 tbsp
Milk - 2/3 cups
Salt - 1 tsp
Sugar - 2 tbsp (Use 1 tsp from this for proofing the yeast)
Yeast - 1 tbsp

Dissolve 1 tsp of sugar in 1/4 cup of lukewarm milk. Add the yeast to this. Cover and set aside for about 10 minute until the yeast mixture becomes frothy.
Take the maida, sugar and salt in a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the center. Add the yeast mixture, milk, yogurt and vegetable shortening. Knead to a soft, pliable dough. Cover and keep aside in a warm place to rise until double in volume. This take about 1.5 to 2 hours. Once it rises, punch the dough down and keep aside for a second rise (roughly 45 minutes)

For the stuffing:
Chickpeas/chana/konda kadalai - 1 cup, soaked in plenty of water overnight
Medium potato - 1, cooked, peeled and mashed
Onion - 1, sliced thin and long
Tomato - 1
Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
Garam masala - 1 tsp, heaped
Salt - to taste
Oil - 5 tsp
Cumin seeds - 1 tsp

Pressure cook the chickpeas until one whistle and then reduce the heat and cook for a further 20 minutes. The chickpeas should be cooked until soft and you should be able to easily mash it. Lightly mash the cooked chickpeas and keep aside.
Heat oil in a kadai.Add the cumin seeds. When the seeds start to sputter, add the sliced onions and a quarter tsp of sugar. Saute until brown. Add in the tomato and cook till soft. Now add the mashed potato, chickpeas, turmeric powder, garam masala and salt. Mix well and heat until all moisture evaporates.
Keep aside to cool.

To make the stuffed bread :
Transfer the dough to a generously floured kitchen counter. Roll it into a thin, long rectangle/oval shape.
Spread the stuffing in the middle of the rectangle.
On both sides of the stuffing, cut the dough into parallel strips.
Criss-cross the strips over the stuffing to make braids. Apply a mik wash over the dough. This will give an even brown colour while baking.

Preheat oven to to 175 degrees. Bake for 22-25 minutes until golden brown.
Wait until it cools a little and then, cut into thick slices and dig in.

 Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other marathoners doing BM#22.
This bread goes to Let's Party - Eggless Bakes and Treats - an event started by Surabhi and guest hosted by Nivedhanams Sowmya.


Nivedhanams Sowmya said...

wow such a delicious and healthy filling!!! love this stuffed and braided bread!!

Ongoing Event - CWF - Whole Wheat Flour
Ongoing Event - Let's Party - Eggless Bakes and Treats

Anonymous said...

Absolutely delightful recipe. I have tried this with Peas and potato. Chickpea looks like another fine option too

Priya said...

Wonderful healthy stuffing, have to make some chickpeas stuffed bread soon.

PJ said...

Nice bread with stuffing.The filling is delicious....

Srivalli said...

Wow Jay, that bread looks really so inviting..and very nice idea of stuffing with chole..

Rajani S said...

I love stuffed bread, here you have a nice braided pattern too! Great :)

Chef Mireille said...

Wow what a wonderful idea!

Unknown said...

Lovely idea and I love the way you've braided this bread. I'm sure they would have tasted delicious. Jayanthi (

Anonymous said...

This is so much fun. A western braided bread with a totally Indian chana stuffing. Cool. Looks great too

Gayathri Kumar said...

Braided bread look great. The stuffing sounds delicious...

sra said...

It sounds delicious, Jay!

sra said...

It sounds delicious, Jay!

Pavani said...

Delicious braided bread.. Looks delicious.

Rajani said...

Looks so delicious and prefessional.