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Simple Mint Chutney and Homemade Rotis...

Fresh Mint

It was a stay in doors kind of weekend so my husband and I decided to spend some extra time in the kitchen cooking up an Indian feast. We wanted to give ourselves a bit of a challenge but honestly these dishes were much easier then we thought.

What can become labour intensive is preparing the wide variety of herbs and spices you need. But with all those wonderful smells wafting about the kitchen – it’s more a labour of love.

Indian cuisine is one of our favourites. Any opportunity we have either locally or on our travels to try some – we jump at the chance. Of course we have had some great experiences:

• Early morning pumpkin rotis from a family run news agents on the campus of the University of the South Pacific in Suva, Fiji

• Homemade samosas and pakoras being passed through a city bus window by street vendors in Nadi Fiji

• The first time we ever tried king prawn korai at a local restaurant

And we have had some not so wonderful experiences:

• A super spicy chilli parantha in Singapore which was so hot that not even 3 mango lassis each could put out the fire on our tongues

• Sag Paneer made at a different local restaurant which was made with cheddar cheese instead of paneer (sigh..I can still taste the disappointment)

• Soggy poppadoms (UNFORGIVEABLE!!!)

This weekend we prepared a few dishes including mint chutney, rotis, dahl soup, sag paneer and chicken pulao. Just to keep things simple I will break the menu up. So today I am just posting the recipe for the mint chutney and rotis.

They work wonderfully together and the mint chutney just gets better over time so make extra! You can also add the mint chutney to the other dishes as well.

I found the mint chutney recipe on this very informative and helpful site and the roti recipe on this site which gives wonderfully clear instructions.

Mint Chutney

Mint Chutney


A handful of fresh mint leaves (I used loads from my garden)

2 tsp garlic paste (I crushed 3 garlic cloves)

2-3 green chillies (I used 3 and it was HOT so think about what you can handle)

½ tsp tamarind paste

½ tsp white sugar

1 tsp water

Salt to taste


Wash and clean the mint and pluck the leaves from the stems

Put the leaves in a mixer and give them a whizz for bout 2-3 minutes to squeeze out the juice (there wasn’t a lot of excess juice for me)

Once the juice is drained off add the remaining ingredients to the mixer and whizz until smooth (it never went smooth for me but the texture was actually very nice)


Rotis (makes approx 13)


200g Medium Wholemeal Flour (I used white chapati flour)

150ml luke warm water

2 Tablespoons oil (I know it isn’t ideal but I only had olive oil – it worked well)

Ghee or butter to spread (I used butter)

Plain flour to dust


Take a mixing bowl and add the flour and oil

Mix the two together with your hands and whilst kneading gradually pour in the water. (The final amount of water required will be dependent on the absorbency of level of the flour so leave a little until you have mixed the flour well. Add remaining 50ml if you want a softer mix. A softer dough allows you to produce a much thinner and pliable roti that will not crack at the edges when cooked. However soft roti dough is hard to roll without some skill so practise a few times before hosting a dinner party!)

Knead the dough for about 2-3 minutes. The dough should be smooth and pliable, cover and allow to relax for 10-15 minutes

Apply a teaspoon of oil onto your palms and knead once more, very briefly. Divide the dough into 13 equal parts. Each portion should be about the size of a ping-pong ball

Before you start to roll, dust each flattened ball with plain flour and use a rolling pin to make a thin circle measuring about 14-15cm in diameter. (The trick to a perfect roti is to ensure that it rolled out evenly. Do not grip the rolling pin too tightly. Place the palms of your hands on the tapered edges of the rolling pin and let the roti almost roll itself. It does not matter how long it takes for you to roll the roti- the result should be smooth and even. A common failing when rolling is to press too hard at the centre giving a roti that is thin in the middle and thicker on the edges. This leads to uneven cooking)

Heat a non-stick pan over medium heat. Place your roti into it.

As soon as you can see little bubbles appear on its surface – usually within 30 seconds – turn it over onto the other side. Cook the other side for 30 seconds. Then place it under a preheated grill or directly onto the fire to bloat – little brown specks will appear on the surface. (Turn it over during bloating. (The preferred method to bloat the rotli varies from household to household. Many use a pair of smooth tongs (chipyo), some use a mesh grill and yet others place it under the grill. The key is to get air into the rotli to make it soft and pliable)

Place your cooked roti in a plate and smear with a little melted ghee or butter

Make all the rotis in the same way and stack them on top of each other. Keep them covered with a clean tea towel, NOT a container, as steam given off by hot rotis will dampen the rest


Here are some great sites for Indian recipes:

Indian Foods Co

Indian Food

Recipes Indian

Indian Food Forever