This is a name by which I know the dish. The name of the dish loosely translates to “Surprise Bread” in English.
The first time I have tasted the dish was at Doha, at one of my aunt’s friends place. She is a great cook and creates great dishes! That week we stayed in Doha (I was in the middle school at that time, I think) was a foodie dream. I don’t remember all the dishes that we had, but we had a lot of invites to my aunt’s friend’s places for food and all were great food experiences.
But this one dish really fascinated me. I have only had stuffed things like samosas and the erachi pathiris up til then. But that day the layers of crepes and the chicken filling fascinated me. All the good manners and etiquette that my parents taught me to follow when going out for dinner at flew out the window! I munched on this one dish to my heart’s content. I did not look around to see if everyone had enough. I am sure my mom would have been embarrassed to the core. But I was content!
I have since then replicated this dish a lot of times after that and this is my best version. The name of the dish might sound funny, but to me the name was really appropriate at the time I first ate this. Truly amazed, I was!
For the crepe
Maida – 1 cup
Corn flour -1 tbsp.
Oil – 1 tsp
Egg – 1
Milk – ½ cup
Water – ¾ cup
Salt – ½ tsp
Pepper – 1 tsp
For the masala
Chicken – 1 cup (Boiled with a little chilli powder, turmeric powder and salt, shredded)
Onion – 2 medium sized
Green chillies – 10
Ginger garlic paste – 1 tsp
Garam Masala – ½ tsp
Pepper – ½ tsp
Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp
Curry leaves – 1 sprig finely chopped
Coriander leaves – a handful finely chopped
Oil – 2 tbsp.
Egg – 1
Milk – ½ cup
Maida – 1tbsp
Salt – ¼ tsp
Pepper – ¼ tsp
For the crepe
Mix all the ingredients and make a thin batter
Take a non-stick frying pan in almost the same dimension or bigger than the pan in which you are going to assemble the pathiri in
Pour a ladle of batter to the oiled pan and cook till just done
For the Masala
In 2 tbsp. of oil, sauté the onions till translucent
Finely shred or crush the green chillies and add to the onions. Sauté for a few minutes
Add the ginger garlic paste and sauté till the raw smell goes
The mixture should now have a light brownish colour to it
Add the turmeric power and stir around till all the mixture is yellow in colour
Add the shredded chicken to this and mix around till all the chicken is coated with the masala
Add garam masala, pepper salt and the leaves
Stir around for another 2 min and let it cool down
Grease a saucepan with ghee
Mix the eggs milk and maida lightly
Dip the crepe in the egg mixture and lay it as the first layer in the saucepan
Put a tbsp. of the chicken mixture on this layer of the crepe and spread it over the crepe
Dip another crepe in the egg mixture and lay it on top
Repeat the steps till the height you want for your pathiri, ending with the crepe. I usually layer around 6 to 7 creps for a 6 in diameter saucepan and 4-5 layers for an 8 in diameter saucepan.
After you have put the last layer of the crepe, pour the rest of the egg mixture on it. Using a handle of a spoon pry the sides of the crepes so that some of the egg mixture can flow down the sides
Put the saucepan on a very low flame and cook for 20 min. Now the you can see the sides of the pathiri will have crisped up a little. Flip this onto a plate or a cutting board.
Very carefully lift the pathiri and place it back into the saucepan, the top of the pathiri now on the bottom. (it might sound scary, but do give it a try)
If the above step is too challenging, you can take a frying pan and cook the top of the pathiri on it, in a little bit of ghee
Wait for it to cool, before cutting through the layers.