How to knead dough
Learn how to knead dough by easy-to-follow directions. Kneading a atta or dough may seem like a daunting task but believe me its fun. The secret to any bread is a well-kneaded atta/dough. Rotis, paranthas, naan, kulchas and puris will shape well if the dough is well kneaded. Proper kneading of dough builds up gluten (wheat proteins) and this gluten acts like a glue and gives elasticity to the dough – and they can be rolled out easily.
Nowadays there is help in the kitchen to knead the dough- Dough makers, bread makers and food processors not only kneads the dough faster and mess- free, they also save time. But kneading the dough traditional way by hand is still fun, enjoyable and simple. Dry wheat flour combined with water is worked between bare hands to form a ball of soft dough.
2 cups of Wheat flour
1 -1/4 cup of water (approximately)
1 teaspoon Oil
1. Measure out the flour in a large bowl. Start out by using little water at first, using your fingers mix water and flour together.
2.It will look all crumbly (as shown in the second picture). At this point one will get an idea how much more water is needed in the dough.
3. Now using your full hand start kneading the dough – adding water slowly. Once the dough comes together and takes the shape of a rough ball (picture 3) make a fist with your hand and start pressing on the atta/dough by turning it inside out – add water drop by drop- not to add all the leftover water all at once as it may make the dough runny and super sticky. Though the measurement says 1-1/4 cup of water- I ended up using a little less that 1-1/4 cup of water.
4. At this point dough should look like the one in picture 4 – still not done. Now using knuckles start kneading the dough. This way we are stretching the dough which makes it more elastic. The more you knead the dough the more air will incorporate into the dough and makes it stretchy and elastic.
5. If the dough feels sticky, DUST it I mean really DUST it with some flour and apply oil and reshape it. If you poke the dough at this point- it will bounce back – as shown in picture 5. See how I made three marks on my dough and now they are bouncing back. Finally the dough is ready. You may cover it with a wet towel and leave it outside for a while or transfer it to a container with lid and refrigerate it.