Thursday, December 14, 2006

Baked Beet BreadRoll & Chai


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When I and many others at that time were growing up (as in the late 80's when I was in school) life in India was much simple, informal, relaxed and also slow. At least that is how it was in our sleepy little township. The IT outsourcing had not overtaken India and call centers were not heard of. Devoid of malls and multiplex theaters our weekends were spent watching "Mahabharat" on Sunday Mornings followed by "Spiderman" on the "Uptron", "EC" or some such TV. Even now I can still faintly hear the Rasna jingle before "Spiderman".
Those days wireless was unheard of and Telephones were rare. Though we did have a black phone with a rotary dial in our home but in our township all calls had to go through this archaic Exchange where the operators manually connected our calls to the requested so-and-so and also entertained themselves listening to us. So people hardly called and if neighbors wanted to drop in they simply knocked or rang the bell.
At least that is how it was in our sleepy little township...

Those impromptu visits by neighborhood aunties were much awaited as you got to hear the local gossip and also because my Ma maintaining the age old tradition of "Atithi Devo Bhava" (Visitors are God so they should be treated with respect) always entertained them with Hot Tea and some quick delicious snacks. She would make things of whatever she had as the visits were unplanned and bread being omnipresent Bread Roll was one of the things often made.

Lots of different stuffing was used for this roll but the stuffing with Beet also known as BeetRoot was a winter special. The sweetness and redness of the beet made the roll delicious as well as pretty. This beet stuffing was also used as a stuffing for a Bengali Specialty called “Chop” which is like a fritter made of mashed potatoes with stuffing.
Though the roll is ideally fried I baked it to add a healthy touch. Baking cooked the beet a little more and brought out the flavor pretty well.

Baked Beet BreadRoll

What you Need

Red Beet - 1 and 1/2 of the medium sized ones. Chopped into small pieces and put in the blender to chop finely
Green Coriander Leaves ~ a quarter of a bunch chopped
Green Chillies ~ 4/5 chopped fine (optional)
Raisins or Kishmis ~ a fistful (about 20) soaked in water
Cashew or Kaju ~ 20 crushed

Bhaja Masala or Dry Roasted Masala ~ 2 tsp heaped

My mother makes this masala and stores it. To make this Dry Roast 1tbsp each of Jeera (Cumin Seeds), Dhania (Corriander seeds), Saunf (Fennel Seeds), 6/7 Laung (cloves) , 6/7 Elaichi (Cardamom), 6/7 TejPata(Bay leaves), an inch & half of cinnamon stick and peppercorns according to desired hotness.Then just dry grind it to a powder.
You can also use your own Garam Masala Powder or any suitable spice mix instead

For the Roll
Bread ~ a slice for each roll. I made 12.
Butter ~ 1 tbsp melted
Egg ~ 1 beaten

How I Did It

Chop the beet into small pieces and put them in the blender. Process them till they are chopped real fine, beet being solid you will not get a fine paste (you don't want that) but it will be granular, something like the above pic.
Heat oil. Use Olive Oil if you want
Add the chopped green chillies, the chopped beet, and sauté.
Add the chopped coriander leaves, the raisins, the crushed cashew
Add salt & the Dry roasted Masala

Sauté and cook covered for about 10 minutes till the beet is cooked. It will be lightly crunchy but totally dry

For Roll
Take a slice of Bread. It is better to use Wheat Bread my Ma says, but I only had White Bread at home.
Remove the sides.
Now comes a slightly difficult part. To make the bread pliable you have to sprinkle water on it and then press it between your palms to drain the water out. If you have already done this before it is easy, else it will take one or two attempts to get this right

Make a round from the stuffing and put it at the centre of the bread. Now mould the bread around the stuffing to make a roll or a round as in the above pic.
Brush the rolls with little butter and the beaten egg. Use a brush lightly to do this
You can fry it at this point if you want. If you are frying no need to brush with butter.

To Bake
Refrigerate for about an hour

Take the roll out of the refrigerator and lightly brown them on both sides on a griddle or tawa as in the pic
Heat oven to 400F

Sprinkle corn meal (I used semolina/sooji) on the baking pan which has been lined with aluminum foil. Tip: I always line my baking pan with aluminum foil, as that makes cleaning the baking pan easy
Place the rolls on the baking pan and bake for approximately 45 minutes
The baking time might vary, so check and bake till the roll is evenly browned
Serve with hot Tea or Chai


This roll can be made and kept in the refrigerator prior to baking. You can Bake it next day

Todays post of Beet Bread Roll & Chai is for Cutting The Chai a delightful Blog by Soumyadip. Check it out for it’s delightful posts and wonderful archive of Indian Ads. If you loved Indian Ads as I still do, it's a ride down memory lane.

Why Beet is Good for You
The various table beets contain significant amounts of vitamin C in the roots, and the tops are an excellent source of vitamin A. They are also high in folate, as well as soluble and insoluble dietary fiber and several antioxidants. From Wiki

Trivia: The sugar beet song, sung nearly weekly on Sesame Street in the early 1980's had only two words: Sugar Beet. How did I miss this, I watch Elmo almost every day, not that I want but I have to


  1. Sandeepa beautiful snap of beet i could smell them already....oh sandeepa they are making me hungry.I love love love bread rolls...and that too not fried, baked ones...ooooo! i so badly want to take a bite...could you parcel them over!!!

  2. sandeepa, beautiful& healthy way to snack Beets! Recipe is so simple and so yummmmm! Thanks for sharing ,would love to try this:)

  3. Chops, how I miss them now that I'm in so far away from the land of chops and roshogollas. The latter is available everywhere, only the quality differs.

    I have to try this recipe out. Not only because this one's dedicated to Cutting the Chai, but also because it looks yummy. Thanks for this.

  4. I love beets,yesterday I made it for dinner.Your dish is unusual indeed and looks colorful and delicious.Great combo too!

  5. Sandeepa, nostalgia right when you think of those days when were growing up, no rush, these days everybody seems to be so rushed.

    Baked Beet Breadroll that is a fantastic dish for a snack. Looks delicious

  6. This is a great recipe. I am always looking for ideas to incorporate beet in my cooking. Thank you so much for sharing

  7. Sandeepa, I apologize the technical problem so our comments got stuck up. Seems that we finally know how to get around it...
    What a beautiful blog you have! I've seen quite a few beetroot recipes but yours is the one I want to try the most! Really lovely!
    Did you notice that in the States, at least in NJ, everytime we go pay a visit, unlikely we're served with tea (or any drink) right away?

  8. Hi Sandeepa, delicious looking chops, that too baked instead of fried! I will certainly try it this weekend. Reminds me of the train ride between Calcutta and Jamshedpur and the endless stream of chop, cutlets, jhaal muri my father would keep buying for us :-)

  9. Sri,
    Yeah shall send you some after I finish having your CHole :)


    Hyan rastar chop barir cheye better right :? But this is not "Chop" I will post that another day

    Thank You

    Yeah life was so much relaxed then. But I would be now bored with that kind of life

    Thank you dear

    Hey you don't have to be's blogger's mistake :)

    Yeah jhal muri, I just love those jhal muri on train. Even now I try to take the train to my in-laws place to have that "jhal muri"
    But this NOT "Chop" I shall try to post the "Bengali Chop" sometime soon

  10. here i go, trying my luck with comments! new dish for me!

  11. Hi Sandeepa,

    Thanks for visiting my blog, receipe looks yummy! its new to me, that too with beet ,gr8 combo too....

  12. Hi Sandeepa,Nice beet rolls.I remember when we were growing up,in our town,we had a small shop that used to sell all these deep fried snacks like bora,pakodi etc.We used to get those vegetable rolls and typically in winter because beet and carrots are available then.They mostly used to contain beets and it tasted soo good.

    Nice tip about the lining of the pan.I do the same-either parchment or foil.The baking of the rolls is a very healthy idea indeed.Must try these.

  13. Hai sandeepa

    thanks for visiting my blog.

    this recipe looks great..nice presentation.

  14. Sandeepa:
    Man your beet rolls are so beautiful. I am gonna try this out for sure.My hubby is not a great fan of beat as it has sweetish taste. I am sure if i make these he will gulp them happily.
    Thank you so much for sharing them

  15. Sandeepa

    Gosh, I have never tried beets as a stuffing before...I must try these rolls..thanks for sharing...~smile~

  16. You brought back fond memories of the good old life in India....thank you! and thank you for your unique recipe, its new to me, will certainly try this..its so healthy. Anything that's baked, I am up for it.

  17. Hi Sandeepa! I've tagged you for a meme, check it out if you're interested.

  18. Sandeepa - lovely recipe and write up. Would love to try beet bread roll.

  19. What a lovely snack that makes, Sandeepa! Nice one.

  20. Hmm ..look great.Thanks for the information also.Well beets are rich sources of iron and vitaminA this is an addition for your info .

  21. Loved Loved Loved it...just now I prepared the breadroll and tasted thought of leaving you a comment. My breadrolls outer skin was little more dark then yours may coz I used wheat bread....but it was delicious....yummy.Thankyou Sandeepa.

  22. Sandeepa nice snack....and you forgot the washing powder Nirma...before the Sunday evening Movie :)

  23. Hey Sandeepa, Thts a very nice dish..I'm goin to try it very soon...

  24. Hi Sandeepa,

    I love your blog with its mouthwatering recipes and the rich narratives.

    A question- are you from any of the SAIL townships by any chance?

  25. How did i miss this one, i am so trying it !!!

  26. I think I am becoming your fan..
    I loved the cranberry cake n now this one..

    I also want to appreciate the way you have illustrated the recipe.. It is brilliant.. whts good, wht can be missed.. and the key ingredient's nutritional value :)


  27. I tried it tonight, and it was amazing! My three year old loved it too :) great way to have veggies. Tried the baked ones. Thanks for such a wonderful recipe.


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