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Kenyan Chapati (Za ngozi)

Updated: Feb 2, 2021

A recipe for an unleavened flatbread that is light and flaky from layers of butter in the dough. Pan charred for an extra layer of flavour. Perfect with stews and curries or with tea as a snack or light breakfast. They can also be used to make a rolex, a classic Ugandan street food.


Here is a simple and easy way to play around with an Abibiman product. Our nit'ir qibe (spiced clarified butter from Ethiopia) is full of flavour and offers beautiful colour and flakiness to these chapatis which are traditionally made with clarified. This recipe shows how you can, for example, replace oil in a recipe with our nit'ir qibe. In doing so you get to familiarize yourself with the flavours before diving into making more traditional dishes.

The dough is kneaded and allowed to rest for at least an hour. After resting, it can be portioned and rolled out into thin circles (the thinner the circle, the flakier the finished product will be). Each circle should be brushed with a generous amount of melted nit' ir qibe. Place circles on a parchment-lined tray and chill in the fridge to allow butter to set. After 10-15 mins, roll dough circles into long cylinders and then coiled on to itself. The dough can then be rolled out into a thin circle again. The next step is to char flatbreads at high heat in a dry pan. Cook in the pan for around 20-30 seconds per side or until the dough starts to puff and blistered charred crust starts to form.


Kenyan Chapati (Na ngozi)

Yield: 8 chapatis @110g each



  1. Add melted nit'ir qibe and hot water to a large bowl. Add salt, sugar and flour to bowl and knead the dough until smooth (approx. 5 mins). *Be careful not to overwork. Factors like temperature, moisture and force will affect the timing*

  2. Cover dough and allow to rest for at least 1 hour at room temperature.

  3. Lightly flour a work surface and portion relaxed dough into 8 equal portions (approx.110g)

  4. Roll portions into thin circles.

  5. Melt 40g of nit'ir qibe. Brush each circle with a generous layer of butter.

  6. Place dough circles on a parchment-lined tray. Allow butter to set on dough in the fridge (approx. 10-15 mins).

  7. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough circles into cylinders and then coil them in on themselves to make a spiral shape.

  8. Roll each ball following the same technique. Then return to the first coiled ball and roll out to a thin circle. (Dough can be frozen at this step)

  9. Heat a pan (preferably cast iron) a medium high-high heat. When pan begins to smoke, add into as many flatbreads as will fit flat in the pan.

  10. After 30-40 seconds, or when dough puffs or forms a blistered charred crust, flip and repeat on the other side. Place cooked chapatis on a plate and cover with a kitchen towel or lid to allow to carryover cook and soften.

  11. Alternatively, for a more crispy crust, you can fry the chapatis in a bit of nit' ir qibe or oil at medium heat until the dough is golden brown.

  12. Can be stored in an air tight container for up to 2 days at room temperature or frozen for freshness.

  13. Cold chapatis can be reheated at medium heat in a pan for 1-2 minute per side or in the oven at 175C (350F) for 7-9 mins


Furahia mlo wako

*Enjoy your meal*


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