Today is my father’s first Yuhrzeit – the first anniversary of his passing. On this day, I want to share with you, Beautiful People, an incredible short article based on this week’s Torah reading, Parshas Tsav.
Hug Your Loved Ones Because You Can
It is now more than two years since my arms and lips stopped working. I ache to hug and kiss my children. I ache to speak to them, and tell them how much I love them and how proud I am of them.
Please read the original post here and come back for the recipe.
I am happy that for the last three years of his long and fruitful life, I was able to spend so much time with my father, and during the final few months, I was with him almost 24/7. I got to hug him and to hold him, to wash him and to dress him, to kiss his hand and to comfort him. To the last moment, he was telling jokes, and with his last breath, he gave the nurse “his lovely smile,” as she called it. For this last Shabbos before Pesach, instead of challahs, in memory of my father who was brought up on Popaliks (for recipe, click here), I made an Indian variation of flatbread – Roti.
In my kitchen and for our purposes, spelt is considered gluten free. However, if you are allergic to gluten or have a celiac disorder, please consult your physician. Basic roti dough is made by mixing flour with water, a little olive oil, and a pinch of salt. Mix it in a bowl until it doesn’t stick to the sides any more, than flip it onto a working surface lightly dusted with flour.
Knead it for a few minutes, to make it nice and smooth, and divide into 8 – 10 pieces, depending on the size of your frying pan. Grab your rolling pin and roll out each piece into a thin round the diameter of your frying pan. It helps to cover the rest of the pieces with a damp cloth to prevent drying out.
Just as popaliks, the reason Roti could be used instead of the traditional two challahs on Shabbos is that, even though they are baked stove top on a frying pan, there is no oil. In other words, they are not fried, but dry baked. It literally takes a couple of minutes on each side, but the pan must be very hot, so watch your hands!
I know my father would’ve enjoyed these beautiful, soft and delicious Roti! His shining Neshomah (soul) is reminding us to tell those we love that we love them – while we can!
- 2 cups white spelt flour (alternatively, whole wheat flour)
- 3/4 cup water or more
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- A pinch of salt
- Mix ingredients in bowl until dough pulls away from sides. On lightly dusted with flour surface, knead until smooth. Divide into 8 – 10 pieces, cover with damp cloth.
- Preheat dry (not oiled) frying pan to high heat. Using a rolling pin, roll out each piece into a round equal in diameter to your frying pan.
- Place each flat round on hot pan, bake for 1 – 11/2 minute on each side, until golden brown spots appear.
- Roti could be warmed in the oven before Shabbos.