Not what you expected…

by Sunita on May 28, 2008

Sorry, if you came here looking for my daring baker’s monthly challenge post. With all those wonderful opera cakes flooding the blogosphere, I must say, that I am a tad disappointed at not being able to post mine. But I did have to let this month’s challenge go.

For one, my mailbox has been playing truant a couple of times, which I did not realise for a while. Which meant that I received my invitation to the new DB forum, and knew about this month’s challenge, just a few days ago. And with us off visiting friends and the kids half term, and me, not in the best of health for the last couple of days, did not help either. See, so many excuses…but , really, I wish I had made it…well, maybe one of these days :-)

Hmm, that has made me feel better already. But I’m a baker, aren’t I, and am supposed to be a daring one at that…so I did bake…not of the sweet kind , though. Actually, it all started with a bowl of leftover dal. I was in the mood to bake some bread, but one thing led to the other, and instead of a plain one, came out these cheesy- dal flatbreads, oozing with flavour.

What’s needed-

5 C of whole wheat flour
4 tsp active dried yeast
1 and 1/2 tsp sugar
1 tblsp salt
2 tblsp +a little extra warm water (for kneading)
2 tblsp oil
1 and 1/4 C warm, cooked masur dal (split red lentil soup)…I had made it this way, but, without the vegetables, and had also tempered it)
100 gms of cheddar cheese, grated
a bunch of fresh coriander leaves, chopped
1 tblsp of butter, melted

How to-

  1. Dissolve the yeast and sugar in the 2 tblsp of warm water and leave in a warm place till it becomes frothy.
  2. In a bowl, mix together the flour, salt, oil and coriander, with the fingertips.
  3. Make a well in the centre of the flour mixture and add the yeast mixture, and mix well.
  4. Add the dal and mix again.
  5. Add enough water and mix together to form a soft dough.
  6. Knead vigorously for 7-8 minutes to form a soft and smooth ball of dough.
  7. Grease a bowl lightly, and place the ball of dough in it, tossing it to coat the dough in the oil.
  8. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave to rise for an hour or till doubled in volume.
  9. Pre heat the oven at 250 deg C and line and grease a baking tray.
  10. Punch down the dough and divide into 11-2 portions.
  11. Shape each portion into a ball and pat it out with the fingertips to a circle of about 4 and 1/2 – 5 inches in diameter.
  12. Place a portion of the grated cheese on it, leaving a space of a cm, all around.
  13. Gather the edges of the patted dough to form a pouch and seal the edges , so that the cheese remains inside it. (just like a stuffed paratha). Pat out the dough again to form a circle of 4 and 1/2 – 5 inches in diameter and arrange on the prepared baking tray.
  14. Place the tray in the top rack of the oven and bake for 12-15 minutes or till nicely browned.
  15. Brush the tops with very little butter, while still hot, and cool completely on a rack before storing, if serving them later. And if they are going to be served straight from the oven, take care while biting into them….the insides are going to be really hot!

    A few notes-

    • The dal preparation that I used was very thick and mushy. If your’s is lighter, use less water. In other words, adjust the liquid needed to make the dough, accordingly.It should be just enough to form a soft ( not very) and smooth ball of dough.
    • While patting out the balls of dough after filling with cheese, take care to seal properly to avoid the cheese from oozing out while baking.
    • If you are baking the breads in batches, make sure to keep the unused dough in a bowl covered with plastic wrap to prevent the dough from drying.

      We had the breads with a spicy chickpeas soup and some fresh salad…the bread was indeed very soft and full of flavours and I’m really glad I made them…hmmm, will have to cook more dal than needed from now on ;-)

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{ 37 comments… read them below or add one }

1 kittie May 28, 2008 at 3:33 pm

Sunita, is it bad of me to say I’m glad you missed this months DB entry?? These breads look and sound fantastic – bread, spice and cheese… baking just doesn’t get much better than this as far as I’m concerned ;)


2 Asha May 28, 2008 at 3:47 pm

Looks plump and delicious, although a bit dense in the middle, may be as you say needed little less in the dough water since adding already cooked dal.
I will try without the dal but will add mashed spicy potato! Think it will work? Looks gorgeous though!:)


3 sunita May 28, 2008 at 3:58 pm

:-D …we quite loved them indeed :-D


4 sunita May 28, 2008 at 4:06 pm

thanks…the middle was actually not that dense, I had split it while still hot and that is the melted cheese oozing…the amount of liquid that I added was quite right for the dough, as the dal was quite thick and not watery…if I had used lesser liquid, it would have been hard to assemble the dough…hope this helps :-)

As for the potato, I’m sure it will work, but of course, the combinations will differ, as you know too well :-)


5 Asha May 28, 2008 at 4:30 pm

Thanks Sunita, that’s cheese in middle! That’s good! :)
I will try with Potato which will keep my kids happy!:D

Good luck to kids’ with their mid term and take care of yourself too, it’s stressful for us until all these exams are over!:)


6 Rachel May 28, 2008 at 4:54 pm

I checked and checked and checked for you DB post…but this definitely makes up for it….Take care of ur health…


7 KayKat May 28, 2008 at 6:07 pm

This is brilliant! You threw in the daal with the yeast bread – that must’ve added some great flavours :)


8 sunita May 28, 2008 at 7:54 pm

Asha,will watch out for your version…and yes, it’s been busy :-)
btw, I have changed the picture of the split bread…the one now there is how it looks like when it cools down…i was in too much of a hurry to cut in earlier…I clicked again today with a left over bread…thanks for pointing it out though…I wasn’t too pleased with the earlier one too :-D


9 Asha May 28, 2008 at 9:10 pm

Oh wow! Sunita, now I can see the cheese and texture inside, really good.
Yeah, in the previous photo it really looked doughy in the middle just because of the angle of the shot. Glad you had this photo in the draft!:)
I will make it for Sunday lunch and serve with Broccoli-Cheese soup, will link. Great looking bread though, you are a great baker!:)


10 sunita May 28, 2008 at 10:07 pm

Yeah…I came to know about the challenge too late :-(


11 Sandeepa May 29, 2008 at 12:17 am

You sure are the most wonderful baker, maybe you should open your very own bake shop right in the middle of the English countryside.
Is summer vac for the kids here ?


12 Aparna May 29, 2008 at 2:42 am

I definitely missed your DB post, but you more than made up for it. I liked these buns and am bookmarking them.
Look forward to your next DB post. Btw, do try this month’s challenge if you can. Its a good one.


13 Sreelu May 29, 2008 at 4:31 am

Sunitha, this is a must try, bread looks so delicious and moist


14 Srivalli May 29, 2008 at 4:36 am

sunita..that sure looks so yummy…I am sure with that dal and cheese it must’ve been heaven!


15 Laurie May 29, 2008 at 7:19 am

Sorry your not feeling well Sunita! Hope you’ll be felling cheery soon!
Your bread looks wonderful! I could go for a piece right now!


16 Malarvizhi May 29, 2008 at 10:35 am

Sunita, I came to your website through Shyamala. It looks absolutely lovely. Your fish dishes are very yummy. I tried out you salmon curry and it came it quite good and it was easy to prepare as well.

Apart from that Suni, I would like to get something to shop my veggies, especially cabbage and stuffs like that in a uniform way, can you please suggest me something to buy.

Thanks for your help


17 Malarvizhi May 29, 2008 at 10:37 am

Sorry, my message is not very clear. I’m looking for something to cut my veggies in a consistent or unfiform way, especially cabbage, carrot etc. Can you please suggest me a good gagget? Thanks for your help



18 Purnima May 29, 2008 at 12:34 pm

Sunita, the leftoverdaal bread look gorgeous!! The cheese in the center looks gr8! Thks for sharing!


19 Mona May 29, 2008 at 1:31 pm

Using up leftover dal in a bread is s superb idea! The bread looks tempting, Thnx for sharing the recipe!


20 Sia May 29, 2008 at 2:36 pm

u r a temptress suni :)


21 Manasi May 29, 2008 at 4:28 pm

Gorgeous! looks so very tempting! I wish I could bake bread!


22 Deborah May 29, 2008 at 4:42 pm

I’m sorry you didn’t get to the DB challenge, but this bread looks fantastic! I would take one of these any day!


23 farida May 29, 2008 at 5:38 pm

Sorry to hear you missed your DB challenge, but hey, you made something fantastic so there is no room for regrets:) This bread looks amazing – so shiny! I love your baked goodies!


24 Sophie May 29, 2008 at 7:02 pm

I’m Sophie, Key Ingredient’s Chief Blogger. We would like to feature this recipe on our blog. Please email if interested. Thanks :)



25 Uma May 29, 2008 at 9:31 pm

lovely, lovely bread. Yummy!


26 Mike of Mike's Table May 29, 2008 at 9:45 pm

These look delicious! And the cheese seems like the perfect touch


27 Vani May 29, 2008 at 11:07 pm

Very creative! The bread looks delicious and so does the soup you’re serving that with! :)


28 Rajitha May 29, 2008 at 11:21 pm

how delicious..u… u… u… talented chick!


29 sunita May 30, 2008 at 8:51 am

:-D D…and the kids’ sumer break do not start till the end of July :-)

Afer finding out about the challenge, I was a bit disappointed too, about not being able to complete it…
do give this bread a try :-)

thanks…the breads were very soft indeed…the kids have been gorging on them as well…even as sandwiches and pizzas :-)

thanks…the flavours did go well together :-)


30 sunita May 30, 2008 at 8:58 am

thanks..just one of those days :-)

Thanks and welcome to my world…glad you’re enjoying my space. as for the chopping. I do most of mine with the good old chef’s knife. I do have a a mandolin, but I use it very rarely.

thanks…we did love the bread indeed :-)

You’re most welcome…I myself was quite surprised at how well it turned out :-)


31 sunita May 30, 2008 at 9:02 am

same to you :-) ))

thanks..and , of course, you can too…just give it a try :)

I’m a little disappointed at not being able to make it too :-(

thanks…but, really, I have to make the make, one of these days :-)


32 sunita May 30, 2008 at 9:04 am

I’ll give it a thought :-)

thanks :-)

thanks…we did love them indeed :-)

thanks…we really enjoyed the meal :-)

thanks…but so are you :-)


33 Deborah Dowd June 6, 2008 at 10:57 am

This looks delicious! I would never have thought of using dal in bread-great idea!


34 sunita June 10, 2008 at 9:33 am

thanks :-)


35 Usha July 7, 2008 at 2:15 am

Fantastic idea,your bread looks delicious,I would love to try this!


36 Sujatha September 23, 2010 at 10:20 am

I have a Morbid Fear for any form of bread baking. My last three attempts (They were also my first :-) Were a DISASTER and I can only feel bad for myself now as I drool over these creations flavourful creations from you Sunitha.

Will I ever be able to bake this?? did you start baking such awesome recipes right from the first time you tried your hand at baking bread.

I want to know how you became as good as you are now (The whole story!)


37 Sunita September 23, 2010 at 11:26 am

Sujatha, I had a dreadful fear of anything that had yeast in it, and the first time I baked bread, was like a rock. I guess, like everything else, one needs lots of patience and practic, when it comes to bread. Keep at it, no one knows everything right from their days in the cradle :-)


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