A Mughlai parantha is a popular street food from the Eastern shores of India.
It is a spicy pocket of food that is made out of flour that is stuffed with cooked minced meat or a stuffing of choice and then deep fried. Best served with a liberal dollop of tangy mint chutney, this paranta makes for a super tasty food to carry on picnics or even in the school tiffin box.
However, I shallow fry my parantha as that is a more healthful option. Also, I prefer to stuff my parantha will a mixture of pre-cooked minced meat (keema, as we call it in india). Mine is a three step recipe that requires making the dough, preparing the filling and then assembling the pockets.
Here is how I do it!
MUGHLAI KEEMA POCKETS
This recipe yields about 5-6 medium sized pockets
INGREDIENTS FOR THE DOUGH
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 cup wheat flour
- 3 tbsp ghee/clarified butter
- Water as required to knead the dough
- 1 tsp salt.
- 2 eggs (reserve for cooking the parantha)
METHOD FOR PREPARING THE DOUGH
Mix all above ingredients together and knead it into dough. Use as much water as needed. The consistency of the dough should be soft, as needed for flat breads. It should not be too hard.
Once done, cover the dough with a wet cloth and keep aside for 1 ½ hours. After that time, knead it again till you get smooth, supple dough.
INGREDIENTS FOR THE KEEMA (MINCED MEAT STUFFING)
- ½ kg chicken keema (minced meat)
- 4 tbsp oil for cooking
- 2 tbsp of cashew nuts
- 2 tbsp chopped coriander
- 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
- 6-7 medium sized onions, chopped fine
- 1 large tomato, chopped
- Oil for frying the pockets
Whole dry spices
- 1 tsp shahi zeera (black cumin seeds)
- 1 bay leaf
- 3-4 cloves
- 1 stick of cinnamon
- 1 dried red chilli
- 2-3 green chillies, slit lengthwise
- 2 green cardamoms
- 2 black cardamoms
- 3-4 black peppercorns
- Half a flower of mace
- salt as per taste
- 1 tsp pepper powder
- 1 – 2 tsp red chilli powder (as per taste)
- 2 tsp coriander powder
- 1 ½ tsp cumin powder
- 1 ½ tsp garam masala
- ½ tsp turmeric
METHOD FOR COOKING THE KEEMA (MINCED CHICKEN)
- In a heavy bottomed vessel, heat the oil and throw in the dry spices. Once they infuse their aroma in the oil, add the chopped onions.
- Dry the onions till they are golden. This should tale you about 20 minutes. Add the ginger and garlic paste and fry for a further 3-4 minutes. Then add the tomato and slit green chillies. Sauté for about 2-3 minutes then add the dry spices except the garam masala. Once the tomato is cooked and oil in the masala starts to separate, tip in the minced chicken meat.
- Cover the vessel and let it cook till done (should take about half hour). You can also choose to pressure cook it at this step. Just remember to add a little water to help develop the steam in the cooker.
- Once the keema is cooked make sure to let all the water in the dish evaporate as we are going to use this for the stuffing. Sprinkle the garam masala, cashews and the coriander leaves and mix well.
- Let the keema cool down. Once cooled, carefully removed all the whole spices that we had added for flavouring. Thisis vital as we need to stuff this mixture in the pockets.
METHOD FOR PREPARING THE MUGHLAI POCKETS
- In a bowl mix the prepared and cool keema with the eggs. You can add a chopped onion, if you wish. This is your mixture for the filling.
- Divide the dough into equal sized balls.
- Flour the counter top of your kitchen and roll out a dough ball into a rectangular shape. Make sure that the rolled dough is as thin as possible without tearing.
- Put a heaped tablespoon of the mixture in the center and then fold over the sides over that till you get a small rectangle that resembles a pocket.
- Heat oil in a dry pan and gently lower the pockets onto it. Make sure to place the thicker side down. That will take longest to cook. Lower the heat and cook till the pockets are crisp and golden. Then gently turn them over and cook on the other side.
- Serve hot with some mint chutney or thick raita.