“Is wheat really bad for us?”
A student from the recent batch of six-week millet journey asked. She is not gluten-intolerant and has no specific food allergies. But I had to explain it to her, and this gave me the idea for this week’s column, too.
Long before the Green Revolution, there were ancient varieties of wheat being grown in India. These are almost extinct today, and everything about wheat is complicated. The proteins, precisely glutenins and prolamins, have become so complicated our body shows auto-immune responses and we are asked to stop eating wheat. That’s not the solution. There has to be some intermediate grain to help you with the transition.
Paigambari wheat, along with other traditional varieties like emmer wheat, is the answer.
Paigambari variety has glycemic index of 55 and low gluten. It is the only wheat that has maximum folic acid, 267 per cent more minerals and 40 per cent more proteins. It is no less than a superfood for your gut.
The recipe today is close to my heart. Growing up it was never noodles or pasta on Sundays. The fresh aroma of crispy Sindhi Koki dunked in thick homemade dahi and a crunch of homemade Sindhi papad was enough.
Read more for the step-by-step recipe.
Ingredients: (makes 4)
· 1.5 cups Paigambari wheat flour
· 1 cup finely-chopped onions
· ½ cup finely-chopped coriander leaves
· 2 tbsp cold pressed oil
· 1 green chilli finely-chopped (optional)
· 1 tbsp pomegranate seeds powder (anardana powder)
· 1 tsp cumin seeds
· ½ tsp red chilli powder
· ½ tsp turmeric powder
· Rock salt to taste
· Lukewarm water to knead a tight dough
1. In a deep bowl, mix flour, onion, coriander leaves, green chillies and all the spices. Add cold-pressed oil and mix without adding water.
2. Now add a small amount of water and continue to knead. Do not overdo it. Refer to the video shared.
3. Once a tight dough is formed, divide it in 4 equal parts.
4. Grease a cast iron tawa (griddle). And gently roast these dough balls from both the sides like a patty. Once done, keep them aside and allow them to cool.
5. Once cooled, roll out Koki like you roll out a thick chapati. This is a hack I have learnt from my mother.
6. Cook this rolled out Koki from both the sides. If required, make small cuts for that desired crunch.
7. Serve hot and pair it with homemade curd and Sindhi papad. It can also be enjoyed with your evening chai.
(Shalini Rajani is the founder of Crazy Kadchi and holds innovative Millets Cooking Workshops for all age groups)