Kolkata Breakfast | Pitai Paratha with Ghughni is a delicious, filling breakfast that is sold on the streets of Kolkatta. It is a very soft paratha that is beaten up and served with curry.
We are at the alphabet K in the Breakfast on Indian Streets. Kolkata is the third-largest city in India and is also known as the Cultural Capital of India. It is a heavenly place for all food lovers. Kolkata’s culinary scene is rich and vibrant and the city’s Food Culture is a world in itself.
From exclusive sweets to delicious chaats, there are numerous street food alternatives in the city. It surely is confusing whether to enjoy these mouth-watering street foods or the Bengali sweets. Puchka, Jhal Muri, are my absolute favourite among chaats, and the Bengali Sandesh and Rasogulla rank top among the sweets. A trip to this city is a must.
What is Pitai or Petai Paratha?
Pitai or Petai is a Hindi word that means beating. Pitai paratha is an unleavened Indian bread that is made with maida. It is rolled in a particular manner. After cooking it is brought down and beaten up. Now, why on earth should you beat up a paratha? Well, it makes the paratha very soft and melts in the mouth. This is a paratha, that is torn and crumbled. This paratha reminds me of the Sindhi Fulko, where we crush the roti. The street vendors make very big parathas and store them in casseroles. They remove a part of it, weigh and sell it. The paratha is paired with different curries like Aloor Dum or Ghugni or Ghughni Aloo.
Ingredients required to make Kolkata Breakfast | Pitai Paratha with Ghughni
All-Purpose Flour / Maida: Use any good quality flour, sieve the flour before using.
Oil: Use any cooking oil, just rub it in the flour.
Water: I use lukewarm water to knead the dough.
White Peas: Soak them overnight, it will reduce the cooking time.
Potato: I boiled the potatoes in a pressure cooker, peeled and cubed them.
Spices: I have used red chilly powder, coriander powder, turmeric and some homemade garam masala.
How to make Kolkata Breakfast | Pitai Paratha with Ghughni
To make Pitai Paratha first take maida in a bowl, make sure you sieve it.
Add salt and mix well.
Now rub in oil and then start kneading the dough with lukewarm water. The dough should be soft.
The dough will be sticky, do not worry.
Cover it with a damp cloth and let it rest for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, grease your hands and bring the dough to the counter.
Knead the dough till it is pliable and no more sticky.
Now divide the dough into six parts and make balls. You can make larger balls too, but for me, this was a good size to handle on my griddle.
Remove one ball and roll it thin and big. Do not worry about the shape. It should be almost transparent.
Now smear oil all over the surface and make a cut from the centre to the edge and roll the paratha in a conical style.
Place the flat side on the slab, and with the help of your hand, press the pointy side of the cone downwards. Our ball is ready.
Roll it into a very thin disc.
Heat a griddle and cook the paratha, flipping as you see light brown spots. Drizzle oil on both sides.
Do not overcook the paratha. This will harden it.
Remove from the griddle and beat the paratha with both your hands.
Serve with Ghugni Aloo.
Pressure cook the white peas with turmeric powder and salt. Cook for one whistle over high flame, then simmer for 5-7 minutes.
Remove from flame and let the pressure drop.
Boil potatoes in another pressure cooker, peel and cut into cubes.
Now let’s make the curry!
Heat oil in a pan. Once the oil turns hot, add bay leaf and chopped onion. Saute until onions turn golden in colour.
Add ginger-garlic paste and saute until the raw smell goes.
Now, add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, and a dash of water. Stir to mix.
Next add chopped tomatoes, coriander powder and salt. Saute till tomatoes become soft and mushy.
Lastly, add cooked peas and potatoes. Mix well. Cover and cook over medium flame for 5 minutes.
Finally garnish with roasted cumin powder, garam masala powder, and chopped coriander. Mix well and remove from flame.
It is best to enjoy a hot Pitai Paratha. If you need to store it, then store in a casserole for a couple of hours, but after that, it will lose its texture.
Store Ghughni for two days in the refrigerator, or freeze it using a freezer-safe box.
I made medium sized paratha and served it with Ghughni Aloo.
Alur Dum or simple Ghughni pairs excellent with Pitai Paratha.
Some of the Popular Street Foods of Kolkata
Let’s check the Breakfasts that I have already posted in this series.
A -Z Breakfast on Indian Streets
Kolkata Breakfast | Pitai Paratha with Ghughni
- Pan / Kadai / Wok
- Pressure Cooker
- 1 1/2 cup Purpose Flour / Maida
- 1 tbsp Oil
- Oil for smearing
- Salt to taste
- 1/2 cup Lukewarm Water
- 1/2 cup Whole Dried White or Yellow Peas washed and soaked overnight
- 4 Potato peeled and cubed
- 3 cups Water
- 1/4 tsp Turmeric Powder
- Salt to taste
For the Curry
- 2 tbsp Oil
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 1 Onion roughly chopped
- 1 tsp Ginger Garlic paste
- 1/4 tsp Turmeric Powder
- 1 tsp Red Chilly Powder
- 1 tbsp Coriander Powder
- 1/2 tsp Garam Masala
- 1 Tomato roughly chopped
- Salt to taste
- Take flour in a big mixing bowl. Add salt. Mix it well.
- Now rub in 1 tbsp oil , so that the flour resembles bread crumbs.
- Gradually add warm water and knead a soft dough.
- The dough will be sticky , apply oil over it and place it in a bowl. Cover with a damp cloth and let it rest for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes , bring down the dough on the counter. Knead the dough till smooth and pliable.
- Divide the dough into 6 equal parts and make balls.
- Remove one ball , and keep rest of the balls covered.
- Now roll this ball into a thin large disc.
- Next, make a cut from the centre to the edge and roll the paratha in a conical style.
- Place the flat side on the slab, and the with the help of your hand, press the pointy side of the cone downwards. Our ball is ready.
- Roll it again , into a very thin disc .
- Heat a griddle and cook the paratha, flipping as you see brown spots. Drizzle oil on bith sides. Make sure the paratha is not over cooked . This will harden it.
- Remove from the griddle and beat the paratha with both your hands .
- Serve with Ghugni Aloo.
- Pressure cook the white peas,turmeric powder and salt. Cook for one whistle over high flame , then simmer for 5-7 minutes.
- Remove from flame and let the pressure drop.
- Boil potatoes in another pressure cooker, peel and cut into cubes.
Making the Curry
- Heat oil in a pan. Once the oil turns hot, add bay leaf and chopped onion. Saute until onions turn golden in color.
- Add ginger-garlic paste and saute until raw smell goes.
- Add turmeric powder, red chili powder, and a dash of water. Stir to mix.
- Add chopped tomatoes and salt. Saute till tomatoes become soft and mushy.
- Add coriander powder. Saute to mix.
- Add cooked peas and potatoes. Mix well. Cover and cook over medium flame for 5 minutes.
- Add roasted cumin powder, garam masala powder, and chopped coriander. Mix well and remove from flame.