Thepla is very staple food in every Gujarati household. There are many different kinds of theplas – mooli thepla, methi thepla, doodhi thepla, mixed vegetable thepla and the list will go on. But today I am sharing dudhi thepla (other names – bottle gourd thepla, lauki thepla)
For those who does not know – Thepla = flat bread made using whole wheat flour, some spices, yogurt and any grated or chopped vegetable.
Now some people might say why not call it paratha? Isn’t thepla Gujarati word of paratha? Answer is NO. Let’s see difference between paratha and thepla –
- Chopped leafy vegetable or grated vegetables and spice are added directly into the dough. (Some prefer to add Besan-chickpeas flour to their thepla.)
- Yogurt is added while kneading the dough
- Theplas are thinner and lighter than paratha
- Theplas are always soft and little chewy.
- Vegetables and spices are mixed or cooked separated and the stuffed (almost 70% parathas are stuffed). I have eaten and made some paratha which are not stuffed.
- Water is added while kneading the dough
- Stuffed or not-stuffed paratha are thicker than thepla.
- Parathas are soft but not chewy at all like thepla.
As I said earlier, some people prefer to add besan to their thepla. I personally do not prefer, because of besan thepla will lose its softness as it cools and becomes crispy like papad. And one more reason that besan is little heavy to digest. I usually make lauki thepla for weekend brunch and I want to make it lighter so I skip besan.
I sometimes make this doodhi thepla for my husband’s lunch box. I also pack some homemade yogurt in another container to go with thepla. If packing for lunch box or serving the next day then please add some more oil while frying the thepla. It keeps it soft and moist.
- Lauki (doodhi or bottle gourd) – 1 cup, grated
- Chapati atta – 1 cup + some more for rolling thepla
- Green chili – 1, chopped finely
- Ginger paste – ½ teaspoon
- Cilantro – 2 tablespoons, finely chopped
- Kasoori methi (dried fenugreek leaves) – 1 tablespoon
- Turmeric powder – ¼ teaspoon
- Red chili powder – ½ teaspoon
- Coriander powder – ½ teaspoon
- Salt – to taste
- Oil – 1 tablespoon + more for making thepla
- Yogurt – 1-2 tablespoons **Notes
- Yogurt – quantity may vary. It depends on how much water content your lauki has. It also depends on how thick or thin your yogurt is. So always add ½ tablespoon at a time. And keep adding as needed.
- Take chapati atta, grated lauki, green chilies, ginger paste and cilantro in a bowl.
- Add all dry spices (kasoori methi, turmeric, red chili and coriander powder, salt) and 1 tablespoon of oil.
- Mix everything very well using your hands.
- Add ½ tablespoon of yogurt at a time and keep kneading the dough.
- Add more yogurt as needed and knead the dough. It should be not too soft or not too stiff (hard). Dough should be smooth and soft same as chapatti dough. (Do not let it rest because as it rest lauki leaves its water it becomes very soft and sticky)
- Divide it into 8 equal portions. And roll it into a round ball using your hands.
- Take one ball at a time. Flatten it between your palms and roll in into dry flour
- Now using a rolling pin, roll it into 5-6 inch circle. If you need to than you can use dry flour while rolling but don’t use more than 2 times otherwise end product will be dry.
- Heat the tawa or pan on medium heat. Once hot put the rolled thepla on it.
- Wait for few seconds and you will see few bubbles on it. Flip it and it should look like this from other side (with few brown spots).
- Then apply about ½ teaspoon of oil on it.
- Flip it and press it very gently using spatula until it is cooked (it is cooked when you don’t see any doughy part.)
- Then again apply some oil and flit it.
- Again press it gently using spatula to cook other side.
- Once cooked remove it from the pan and keep into a insulated container to keep it warm or serve it right from the pan to the dish. Repeat the same process for all the theplas.
Shelf life – best served warm or the day it’s made. But you can keep it up to 3 days at room temperature. If storing for 2-3 days then use some more oil while frying the thepla to keep it soft and moist.
Serving suggestions – Serve it as a snack or breakfast. Or even it can be a light meal with a bowl of yogurt or any chutney or pickle. It would be perfect for kid’s lunch box or even for adults too.
Tips – all important steps are made bold fonts during the process. Please read carefully before trying.
I have served doodhi thepla on last weekend with delicious and tangy mango chutney.