20 September 2019 Lorraine 8Comment
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I make Soft Butter Rotis almost every week and yet I don’t have a recipe on my blog. What’s wrong with me! Finally I have taken some photos and my recipe is ready to be posted. If you are South African you will know it’s “blasphemous” to make a roti anything other than soft…haha!

As you will know if you have been reading my posts, I was raised in a South Indian home. Roti was not a staple in our home so it took me a lot of trial and error to get my roti to perfection. I remember the days my hubby cringed when I made rotis. It was too thick, too thin, too hard, somedays like rubber, other days rock hard….Lol! I can safely say I have finally passed the test.

You know they say “practice makes perfect”. I have watched my mum-in-law make them and I have asked her a million questions so I never fail again. She is quite the expert at making rotis. Nothing is measured either. I am proud to say I have also reached that level of expertise, I no longer measure my ingredients when making these Soft Butter Rotis. However, that too comes with patience and loads of practice.

Rotis made the South African way with butter

If you read my little post on roti making, you will find a few helpful tips. Firstly, your water has to be freshly boiled straight out the kettle. You can use butter or oil, doesn’t make a difference. I have tried them both and they work equally well. Your dough will feel a little sticky at first but as you knead the dough will become silky smooth.  I usually don’t add salt to my dough but you can add a pinch if you wish.

Perfectly round rotis are only achieved by starting with a neat ball of dough. If you start with a great foundation you will achieve a great final product. I personally love the rotating rolling pins, it works well for me. My rotis are perfectly round when I use this rolling pin as I feel that I can roll my dough with ease. But you can use any rolling pin that you are comfortable with. You must also dust your surface with flour, the dough is soft so you need the flour to help you roll it out.

If you have the time you can cover your dough with a damp kitchen towel and let it rest for half an hour, that’s guaranteed to give you perfectly soft rotis. I don’t usually have time for this but one day I had an emergency and couldn’t finish up my roti-making and when I got back to finish them I had the softest rotis.

I also mentioned in my post about roti making about not having to knead your dough too much. The most I’ve kneaded my dough for is about 2 minutes and this works perfectly well as long as you get a smooth silky dough.

Rotis made the South African way with butter

If you do try this recipe please drop me a note, I would love to hear how it turned out

Rotis made the South African way with butter
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5 from 3 votes

Soft Butter Rotis : South African Recipe

Soft, buttery rotis made the South African way. Perfect accompaniment to Indian curries
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Indian
Keyword Butter Rotis, Roti, Soft Rotis, South African Rotis
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 8


  • 2 cups/500ml cake wheat flour sifted
  • 4 tbsp melted butter plus extra for brushing the rotis
  • 1 cup/250ml boiling water
  • pinch of salt optional


  • Sift the flour. Add the melted butter
  • Pour the cup of boiling water into the flour
  • Mix it into the flour using a fork or spoon. You will have a wet, lumpy mixture.
    Rotis made the South African way with butter
  • Mixture would have cooled down a little. Knead into a soft dough. The dough will feel a little sticky but as you knead the dough will become silky smooth.
  • If the dough doesn't feel soft you can drizzle in a little more butter and keep kneading
  • Heat a non-stick pan or thawa on the stovetop on medium heat. You may need to adjust your heat if the pan gets too hot
  • Divide dough into 8 pieces. Roll each piece into a neat round ball
    Rotis made the South African way with butter
  • Flatten the dough with the palm of your hands. Roll the dough on a lightly floured surface. You can add more flour as you are rolling to prevent the dough from sticking
  • Roll out into a circle, about 20cm in diameter
  • Place the roti on the pan. Cook until it starts to bubble a little
  • Flip it over. Cook until the other side bubbles. Brush with butter and turn over again.
  • Brush the other side with butter and turn over. You will be flipping your roti over 3 times. Takes about a minute or less to cook the roti
  • To keep rotis soft place them in a container with paper towel at the bottom and more on top of the rotis

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8 thoughts on “Soft Butter Rotis : South African Recipe

  1. 5 stars
    Made these last night. They took me 5 minutes and were the yummiest roti’s I’ve ever had. Can’t stress how easy this was! Thank you, Lorraine. I will never, ever be buying store bought again!

  2. After trying very involved and unsuccessful recipes; I was pleasantly surprised by this simple and successful one! Thanks!

  3. 5 stars
    After a few dismal attempts at other involved recipes, I was pleasantly surprised by this simple and successful one. Thank you!

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