By Billy Law, Malaysia Kitchen Ambassador.
Roti jala literally translates to ‘net bread’, referring to its thread-like pattern that resembles a fishing net. These lacy crepes are a great alternative to rice and excellent accompaniment to rich gravy dishes such as Chicken Curry Kapitan.
A special roti jala mould is often used to make the lacy crepe but don’t worry if you do not have one, we will make our own mould by using an empty tin can which works a treat!
- 300 g plain flour
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp turmeric powder
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 cups (500ml) coconut milk
- 1 cup water
To make a roti jala mould, prepare and clean an empty tin can, and using a hammer and a nail, punch five holes at the bottom of the can in a quincunx formation. You can use the empty tin can from the coconut milk used in this recipe and a quincunx is a geometric pattern with five points arranged in a cross, with four points forming a square and one point in the centre. Just like the five on a dice.
To make the crepe mixture, sift flour, salt and turmeric into a mixing bowl. Add eggs, coconut milk and water and beat until smooth. Strain batter if it is lumpy. Alternatively, if the batter feels too thick, add more water. It should have a watery, easy-flowing consistency. Cover with cling film and let it rest for 30 minutes.
Grease and heat a non-stick heavy based pan over low heat. Place the mould over a clean bowl to catch the drips. Pour a ladleful of batter into the mould, then swirl in circular motion over pan to form a lacy net. Allow it to cook for around 15 to 20 seconds. Fold in half, then half again to form a triangle. Alternatively, fold two edges inwards to meet at the centre and then roll it up. Repeat until
all batter is used.
Serve warm with a curry dish like my Malaysian Chicken Curry Kapitan.
Prep time: 15min • Cook time: 30min