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Gluten-Free Flat breads (Roti)
Physicians recommend gluten-free diet for Celiac patients and patient suffering from dermatitis herpetiformis. Persons with Diabetes Type I, and their immediate family members have a 5% risk of developing Celiac disease, or sensitivity to gluten. Infants under the age of 12 months may be gluten sensitive. Most of the gluten free flours are slightly alkaline. Wheat is slightly acidic. Therefore gluten free breads are also helpful for people with stomach ulcers.
What is Gluten?
Chakki refers to the elastic substance left-over after the starch has been washed away from the dough made of wheat. Chakki is mentioned in Babarnama (Auto-biography of Babar, First Moghul emperor of India). The oldest recipe is documented in Ain I Akbar. Chikhi Recipe (Ain-I-Akbar). I have included a more modern version Chakki Subzi. Chakki is Gluten. When digested, Gluten breaks down into several types of peptide chains. One specific type of peptide is found to be harmful to Celiac patients. Similar peptide chain is found in Rye and Barley.
The peptide chains in Oats closely resemble the proteins in wheat, still slightly different. Some Celiac patients can easily tolerate oats; while, it may be very harmful to others. To be on safe side, avoid Oats.
Glutinous rice refers to its stickiness, it has nothing to do with gluten. Corn protein is some times called corn gluten, it is not harmful to celiac patients.
It should be noted that Rice cereal is the first solid food recommended for infants in United States. In South India, Ragi flour (Finger Millet) is the first solid food given to infants.
Ingredients used in making gluten-free Roti
Flours used to make Gluten-free flat breads (Roti) are: Rice, Corn, Buckwheat (Kuttu), Legumes (Besan, Moong, Urad, Soya beans), Millet (Bajra, Jowar, Ragi, Kheri, Kodo, and Jhungori), Tapioca (Sabudana), and Water chestnut (Singhara).
Amaranth, Potato flour are not popular. Boiled white potatoes and sweet potatoes are kneaded in the dough in some of the recipes.
Quinoa is popular in South America and United States, it is not available in India. You can use Quinoa flour same as Bajra.
All nuts and nut flours are gluten free including: Almonds, Sesame, Flaxseeds, Walnuts.
Onions, Scallions, Garlic, Cilantro, Serrano, Ginger, Fenugreek leafs, Tomatoes, Carrots, Spinach, Mustard greens, Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes, Cauliflower
Spices, Leavening agents
Salt, Sugar, Cumin, Ajwain, Fenugreek seeds, Turmeric, Cayenne, Ghee, Butter, Dahi (Yogurt), Eggs, Arrowroot, Sabudana (Tapioca)
Be careful when selecting Baking powder, some baking powders may not be gluten-free.
Rice breads are common in south India and Gujarat. All natural rice are gluten free: short, medium, long grain, brown, polished white, red, Basmati, sticky.
There are two ways to make the dough: cooked rice, rice flour
The whole rice may be boiled and over cooked. The water is drained off. The cooked rice is ground to make dough. You can use food processor.
For rice flour, it is mixed in a boiling water, cooked and left to rest to form dough.
Dosa and Idli made with rice and Urad (Black Matpe) are special types of Gluten free breads. Rice and Urad are pre-soaked in water overnight, ground to make batter, fermented.
Buckwheat is called Kuttu. Kuttu dishes are traditional during religious holidays. During Holi, Malpua (crepe covered with syrup) are popular. During Navaratri, Kuttu Pratha is made from a dough made of mashed potatoes and Kuttu flour. It should be noted that potatoes are gluten free Paratha - Kuttu Aloo. You can make Roti from this dough without frying it to make Paratha.
Common legume flours include: Chickpea flour (Besan), Urad Flour (Decorticated Black Matpe), Moong Flour (Decorticated Mung Bean), Soy bean flour.
Normally, 25% to 33% of wheat flour is replaced with Legume flours such as Besan or Soy to make traditional Roti for increased protein value. Roti - Missy These are not Gluten free Roti.
Legume flours are used to make Cheela. Cheela is similar to crepe. Cheela are Gluten free .Cheela Besan
Legume flours are used to make spicy pancakes with chopped vegetables. These pancakes are called Pudla
Legume flours dough can be fermented and steam cooked to make gluten free snack called Dhokla.
The Millet flours include: Pearl Millet/Spiked Millet (Bajra), Finger Millet (Ragi), Great Millet/Sorghum (Jowar), Foxtail Millet (Kheri), Little Millet (Kodo), and Barnyard Millet (Jhungori)
Aurangzeb (Moghul Emperor) did not like wheat breads, he ate Bajra Roti everyday. In North India, Bajra is a common Millet bread. Roti - Bajra (Pearl Millet Flour). Another popular Millet Roti in North India is made with Sorghum Roti - Jowar (Sorghum).
In South India, Finger Millet (Ragi) is a common millet flour. Ragi is high in iron and calcium. It is given as a first solid food to infants. Ragi is also high in protein and low in carbohydrates compared to Rice and wheat, Ragi breads are recommended for Diabetics.
You can also Ragi Roti like the Bajra Roti. I have given my own version of South Indian style Ragi Roti
Special Types of Gluten-free breads
Crepe made of Mung beans and Brown Rice Moong Dal Dosa
Steamed Dumpling made of Rice and Urad Traditional Idli
Cooked dough balls made of Ragi (Finger Millet) Ragi Mudde Recipe
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