Cookbook:Papadam (Black Gram Flatbread)

Papadam (Black Gram Flatbread)
CategorySouth Asian recipes

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Papadam (also papadum, poppadom, papar, and appalam) is an Indian and Sri Lankan flatbread. Typically, it is prepared using black gram bean flour, rice flour, or lentil flour with salt and peanut oil added. The ingredients are made into a dough and formed into a thin, round shape similar to a tortilla. As the dough is prepared, the papadam can be seasoned with a variety of different ingredients such as chilies, cumin, garlic, black pepper, or other spices.

Papadams are cooked by deep-frying in oil, which causes them to expand and crispen. They may also be cooked by roasting them over an open flame, in a toaster oven, or in a microwave oven. Depending on the cooking method they may be either soft and moist or crisp in texture.

Usually served as a complement to a main dish in South Asia, a relatively recent Western practice is to treat them as a snack or as an appetizer to be topped with chutney, various dips or salsas. Commonly made in different sizes, the smaller ones are for snacks and the larger variety may be used as a food wrap.




  1. Mix together the flour, pepper, cumin, and salt.
  2. Add water and knead the dough until it is smooth. You may have to add some water, depending on the flour.
  3. Split the dough into 10–15 balls.
  4. Roll out one ball at a time to a very thin round layer on a slightly oiled surface.
  5. Dry the papadams in the oven for an hour (at about 100°C or 200°F).
  6. Keep them in an airtight container.
  7. Fry the papadams in oil until they are crispy but not too brown.