Ten Ways of Making Chapathis

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Posts: 1104
Joined: 14 May 2011, 20:30

Ten Ways of Making Chapathis

#1 Post by SivaRamanathan » 26 Jan 2020, 22:03

You have to feel the flour with your fingers for the texture
or else you will have to seive it once more to hold back the coarse
chaff remembering flour and flour will stick together.

A dash of salt with the tip of the fingers, one half spoon sugar
warm milk and water ,a spoon full of oil and all your five fingers
and childhood will help you with memories of sand pies.

It is almost like a prelude to making love at least the massaging
and the punching into the flour and kneading and pinching
if you do care for the after glow or sensuus silky softness.

Then you marble small balls one at a time sprinkle raw flour
pat it flat and with your hands simultaneously rolling, and as you roll
see the flattened dough roll with you, gently round.

You warm it on a tava, place it on a mesh and toss and
you are alert to catch it right on the wire mesh.
herein come all your culinary skills

Now you are exposing it to direct fire, so the mental timing
has to be just right ,see how it fluffs and
rises, quick miracle and then into the hot pack lined with
muslin and a sprinkle of ghee.

These are the basics, but there are variations, you make it
more malleable add onion and chilli and pat it on a fuming tava
with your palm; my city bred palm is soft and pink and cannot
tolerate heat.

Or if you have got the itch and can feel a poem building in your insides
you just have to take a huge chunk of the dough ,flatten it with the tip
of the fingers and make a few heavy chapathis. Anyway the men
folk will need it.

Down south we make kushboo idlis and dosas as white
and soft as the mogra flour and idlis
with spongy holes and fluff
and we who have learnt the
art from the north, we are not born with it.

When my son was only three he sat up on his bed with a dream
'Shana Shana,' he said and on class investigation I learnt
Shana had shared her chappathis with him,
the best way to a man's heart.

So in fear of a North Indian bahu I mastered the art.

Footnote Bahu-daughter-in-law

Posts: 1503
Joined: 03 Jun 2016, 21:03

Re: Ten Ways of Making Chapathis

#2 Post by BobBradshaw » 27 Jan 2020, 21:48

You need to trim this significantly. Too much detail deflates a poem. I can only hold so many details in my mind at one time. After that I'm like a juggler with too many balls in the air, and more being thrown at me to include...just too much, I'm overwhelmed. I hate using the word "draft", but in this case I think it's a good draft. There are many fine images....keep what works best, save the trimmings for other poems.

Posts: 1104
Joined: 14 May 2011, 20:30

Re: Ten Ways of Making Chapathis

#3 Post by SivaRamanathan » 27 Jan 2020, 22:03


That is why it has emained in my folder. Now I will be able to work on it. Thank you.


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