Jowar ki Bhakri is typical traditional unleavened Indian flatbread commonly prepared daily in most homes at Maharashtra. This bland nutritious roti or bhakri is made with Sorghum flour also known as jowari ka atta. The jowar ki Bhakri is the staple diet in Western and Central Indian cuisine.
Jowar is also known by various other names which include durra, Egyptian millet, Jwari in Marathi, Jowar in Hindi, Cholam in Tamil, Jola in Kannada, and Jonnallu in Telugu. Sorghum species are native to tropical and subtropical regions of Africa and Asia, with one species native to Mexico.
Sorghum flour for centuries has been the most important staple food for millions of poor rural people in the semiarid tropics of Asia and Africa and also remains the principal source of energy, protein, vitamins and minerals. Sorghum, like barley is extremely resistant to drought. It is usually grown in dry parts of the world. Bhakri in Marathi means a type of unleavened flatbread.
The Bhakri is usually made from sorghum flour but can also be made with different versions such as using wheat or rice flour (rice roti) or bajra or mix of jowar bajre ki bhakri. A typical bhakri just includes flour, salt, little oil mixed with hot water. Here you can use one variety of flour or a wide array of flours and it is not flavoured or enhanced with any other additional ingredients. Bhakri is served with an assortment of accompaniments such as Teeka chutney, Gavran matki usal, Gavran Chicken (Village style Chicken curry), Fodni Mirchi (Tempered Green Chillies) etc.
Most of these dishes are simple, inexpensive and is traditionally popular among rural population such as the farming community. Jowar ki bhakri is very similar to the jolad rotti in the North Karnataka region or the jonna rotte in Telangana region in Andhra Pradesh. Over centuries, this roti was a staple at most meals but is now replaced by other kinds of flatbreads such as chapatti, paratha, naan, phulka, kulcha etc. because they are faster and easier to prepare.
But even now, at most rural parts of India the jowar ki bhakri or roti are being prepared mainly for its nutritional benefits and availability. Sorghum is valued for, it’s a very good source of proteins, contains essential nutrients like iron, calcium, potassium and phosphorous. Sorghum is known to a heart healthy and rich in phyto-chemicals including tannins, phenolic acids and anthocyanins. Studies have shown that sorghum can reduce the risk of certain types of cancer in humans.
The phytochemical levels are so high in this millet that they have shown potential usefulness in reducing obesity as well. Jowar ki rotis are commonly eaten in India and can be mixed with other flours to make it multi grain flour. The sorghum flour is also used to make pancakes, chapatis, chips and porridge throughout different cultures. In the United States, sorghum flour is commonly used in baked goods.
It is also added or substituted in recipes that call for flour such as cakes, cookies, breaks and muffins. Initially preparing the jowar ki roti needs little skill in preparing the dough and roti. But practice does make one perfect. This recipe is an excellent way of making the bhakri in a very easy and simple method.
To prepare the Jowar ki Bhakri, take a bowl and add 2 to 3 cups of sorghum flour or jowari atta, a pinch of salt and mix the dough with hot water to make soft dough. Take some dough and roll it well, press and roll it again to make a soft dumpling.
Place a plastic sheet on a flat surface and place the ball of dough in the centre. Place another plastic sheet over. Take a flat plate and press the ball of dough gently to make a thin flat roti. Heat a pan and fry the roti evenly on both sides until cooked. (Shown in the video). Serve hot with any gravy curry, pickle etc.
Tip - Use hot water for kneading the dough. As there is not much gluten formation, we need to use hot water to make soft dough. This method is very easy for beginners.
A main magical reason for sorghum flour to enter the health food fuss is because it is gluten-free. Gluten is a protein found in many grains such as wheat, barley, rye and oats. While some people choose to eat gluten-free foods because of mild intolerance, this type of diet is essential for those who have celiac disease.
Sorghum has a similar nutritional makeup to corn although it is higher in protein and fat and lower in vitamin A. I am sure by now; you must be ready to view the video. Do try this dish and enjoy viewing as it would surely inspire you to cook.