What We Ate Part I: Indian Potato-Stuffed Flatbreads

by Ben Miller

Chicken Tikka Masala, Basmati Rice, and Indian Potato-Stuffed Flatbreads

Chicken Tikka Masala, Basmati Rice, and Indian Potato-Stuffed Flatbreads

Last night was my turn to host Top Chef and following a burst of inspiration last week, I decided to go with an Indian feast of potato-stuffed flatbread, basmati rice, pilaf style, and chicken tikka masala. I’ll be posting them individually throughout the day. First up: Indian potato-stuffed flatbreads.

This was actually the only dish of the three that I’d made before and I discovered it senior year of college when trying out different recipes from How to Cook Everything. While time consuming, they are delicious and spicy. One thing I really recommend keeping in mind while making this is that you have to taste the filling. The seasoning measurements are way under what you’ll actually need.

With that said, recipe and instructions after the jump.

After cooking in the pan

After cooking in the pan

Indian Potato-Stuffed Flatbreads

from How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman


1.5 cups whole wheat flour
1.5 cups all purpose flour
4 medium baking potatoes (I used Russet)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons peanut oil (I actually used vegetable I think though it may have been olive oil)
1 cup water
Salt and Pepper
1 tablespoon lemon juice

It’s important to keep in mind with this recipe that everything really is done to taste and feel, that includes the water too.


1) Boil potatoes in salted water (this took about 20 minutes).

2) When potatoes are tender and done, remove them from the water, let cool a bit then peel them. The skin should come right off. Put them in a large bowl and mash them along with salt, pepper, cayenne, lemon juice, and 1 tablespoon of oil. Keep tasting the mixture–I found that I needed to add little under a teaspoon of cayenne and a good bit more salt and lemon juice. You want it to be spicy but not too hot and still flavorful.

3) While the potatoes are cooking, make the dough. Combine the flours, cumin, and salt either in a large bowl or food processor (I started with the latter and finished with the former). After mixing, pour 2 tablespoons of oil and then water into the feeder tube, if using a food processor, or into a bowl. Keep combining until you get a sticky ball. I found this requires using a bit more water.

4) Once it is done, take the dough and place it on a floured surface and knead until smooth. Then roll the dough out into a 12-inch snake-shaped roll. Cut it into about 12 pieces.

5) Take each piece and roll it flat into a circular shape. Take two tablespoons of the filling and place it on the dough. Pull the ends together and pinch shut. Then flip it over and roll the dough out so it is flatter.

6) In a pan over medium-high heat, pour a tiny bit of oil. You don’t want even enough to coat, just give a tiny sheen of oil. If you use a nonstick skillet you can probably get away without using it at all. Place the flatbread in the pan and let it cook til it gets brown spots on each side, about 3 or 4 minutes a side. Serve and Enjoy!

A few added pictures:

Kneading the Dough

Kneading the Dough

Potato Filling

Potato Filling

Dough with filling on it

Dough with filling on it


4 responses to “What We Ate Part I: Indian Potato-Stuffed Flatbreads

  1. here’s the question: could you improvise a little around the filling (less potato, maybe a little onion or some peas)? what do you guess that would do to cooking times/ease of process?

  2. I would most certainly improvise and add in some cooked onion and/or peas.

    In terms of cooking time, I think you really could make this in pieces. I think you could definitely make the filling or the dough ahead of time and then when ready assemble them and cook. The filling is essentially a modified form of mashed potatoes if you think about it, and that tends to keep very well. The dough also will stay pretty well if you keep it wrapped in plastic wrap in the fridge.

    If you do experiment please let me know, I’d be very interested to see how other variations turn out!

  3. Pingback: What We Ate Part II: Chicken Tikka Masala « The Internet Food Association

  4. You can fill with pretty much anything that will roll out. Cauliflower is common, radish can be good, and so forth. Indians usually cook these with at least enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan, and that does produce a tastier and more flexible result — I would just use a good-quality high-heat oil. If you want to avoid oil altogether I would do simple chapatis instead.

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