K: Kothu Parotta

April 13, 2015

Yes, Kothu Parotta. If you’re looking puzzled and are wondering what that means, it’s highly unlikely that you’ve tasted this dish. This is a delicacy (I certainly think so) made from Kerala Parotta, popular in Tamil Nadu, and Singapore. There, that’s your #TIL* for the day. 

Wikipedia tells me that this dish has its origins in Sri Lanka, based on what’s called Kothu roti. It’s nothing but finely minced Parotta or roti, pan-fried (or nearly deep-fried, depending on where you’re eating it) with, I suspect, whatever the cook has on hand. And egg or two scrambled, various meat versions I think, and the vegetable versions I’ve eaten have had onion, cabbage, carrot and capsicum in various combinations. Of course, I’m convinced this was one of those genius inventions of a smart, thrifty mother somewhere, who didn’t have the heart to throw away the previous night’s leftover rotis. So naturally, as smart mothers* are wont to, she recycled them by mincing the rotis and tossing in a bunch of stuff so that no one could ever guess that this stellar new dish actually comprised extras from last night’s dinner. 

Funnily enough, despite plenty of trips to Tamil Nadu, I had never heard of this brilliant dish until I moved to Singapore. Thanks to one of my then flat mates, I was introduced to the humble yet delicious Kothu Parotta I’m one of the many restaurants in Little India. I loved it. I also recall variations like chilly Parotta. There’s something about greasy fast-food-type dishes, really. Of course, a few years later, on trip to Trichy, I tasted the real deal. The street food version. Clanging spatula quickly mincing the Parotta on a hot tava, sizzling, greasy, delicious Kothu Parotta. 

And last night we ended up ordering from The Egg Factory. Quite nicely done, delicious Kothu Parotta took me back in time and brought to life, this post. 

* #TIL: today I learnt 

*smart mothers : there aren’t really any other kind, yeah? 😉


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