1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup chapatti flour (atta), or ½ cup whole wheat flour and ½ cup unbleached all purpose flour
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon ground fennel
½ teaspoon salt
2 day-old bread slices, soaked in ½ cup warm milk
6 tablespoon plain yogurt
Melted desi ghee or unsalted butter, for brushing
In a food processor, combine the all-purpose flour, chapatti flour, sugar, fennel and salt and pulse a few times to mix. Add the bread with the milk and pulse until crumbly. With the machine running, gradually add the yogurt through the feed tube in a steady stream. Process until the dough comes together into a ball and begins to clean the sides of the bowl. Avoid overprocessing.
Place the dough on a work surface. Lightly coat your hands with oil and knead well for 6 to 8 minutes. The dough should be medium-soft, not stiff or sticky, and hold an impression of your fingertips when pressed it should resemble Play-Doh. From into a smooth ball, cover loosely with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap, and let rest for 30 minutes to an hour.
Place the dough on a floured work surface and knead briefly until smooth. Divide the dough into 8 portions and roll each portion between your hands to form a smooth ball. Put the dough balls on a plate and cover with a kitchen towel to prevent drying.
Heat a tava, griddle, or skillet over medium-high heat until very hot, about 6 minutes. Temperature is important in getting flatbreads to puff; when you can hold your hand over the pan for only about 5 seconds, then it is ready. Reduce the heat to medium.
Place a piece of dough on a floured work surface and roll it out into a 5 to 6 inch, 1/8 inch-thick circle, dusting lightly with flour as necessary. Carefully pick up the flatbread, slap it back and forth to shake off any excess flour, then gently slap it into the pan (make sure there are no creases, or quickly use a spatula to spread it evenly). Cook until it starts to puff in places, then press the unpuffed portions very gently with the back of a spoon or a kitchen towel compressed into a irregular ball and guide the air to puff the roti. (This process should not take more than 1 minute.) Use a spatula to turn over. Thee roti should start to puff; again, press gently and guide the air to the parts that have not puffed so that they will fill with steam, about 30 seconds. Make sure the flatbread is fully cooked, with no raw spots, and turn over again to finish cooking, if necessary. Repeat with the other rounds, adjusting the heat according to your speed; if you’re using a cast-iron pan, the heat will build as you’re rolling the next flatbread, so you’ll likely have to lower the temperature as you work.
Transfer the finished flat breads to a cloth-lined basket. Brush generously with melted desi ghee and serve right away.