A flat tawa, also known simply as a "tawa"a or "flat griddle," is a type of cooking pan commonly used in Indian and other South Asian cuisines. It is a flat, circular, or slightly concave-shaped pan with no raised edges, designed to be placed directly over a heat source like a gas stove, electric stove, or open flame. Tawas are typically made from materials like cast iron, aluminum, stainless steel, or hard-anodized aluminum.
Uses of a Flat Tawa:
The primary purpose of a flat tawa is to cook various types of flatbreads, such as rotis, chapatis, parathas, naans, puris, and other Indian bread varieties. It is also used for making dishes like dosas, uttapams, chillas, and more. The flat surface of the tawa provides even heat distribution, allowing the bread or pancake to cook uniformly and attain the desired texture and taste.
Flat tawas are an essential tool in Indian kitchens and are widely used for daily cooking.They offer a versatile and efficient way to prepare a range of dishes, making them a staple in traditional South Asian cooking. Tawas can come in various sizes to accommodate different cooking needs, from small tawas for personal use to large ones for cooking in larger quantities. They are easy to use, maintain, and are integral to the preparation of various delicious and popular dishes in the region.
Difference Between Flat Tawa And Concave Tawa:
Flat Tawa: As described earlier, a flat tawa is a basic cooking pan with a flat, circular surface, and no raised edges. It is primarily used for making flatbreads like rotis, chapatis, and parathas, as well as dishes like dosas, uttapams, and pancakes. The flat surface ensures even heat distribution and is perfect for cooking these items.
Concave Tawa: A concave tawa, also known as a "kadai," is similar to a flat tawa, but it has a slightly concave shape. This design is well-suited for making dishes that require more depth, such as stir-fries, curries, and gravies. The concave shape allows for better mixing and tossing of ingredients.
Different Types Of Tawas:
Flat tawas are the most common, but others have different uses. The following tawas have distinct traits:
Appam Tawa: An appam tawa is specifically designed for making appams, a popular South Indian dish. Appams are soft, fluffy, and bowl-shaped rice pancakes made from fermented batter. The appam tawa has a shallow, curved surface that helps create the unique shape and texture of appams.
Grill Tawa: A grill tawa has raised ridges or grill lines on its surface. It is used for grilling vegetables, meats, and kebabs, giving them attractive grill marks and enhancing the smoky flavor. Grill tawas are popular for indoor grilling when an outdoor grill is not available.
Mini Tawa: A mini tawa is a smaller version of the regular tawa and is typically used for cooking small quantities or individual portions of items like mini pancakes, mini dosas, or even toasting bread.
Induction Tawa: An induction tawa is specifically designed to be used on induction cooktops. It has a magnetic base that interacts with the electromagnetic field generated by the induction stove, allowing for efficient cooking.
While the flat tawa is the most common and versatile type, the other tawas cater to specific cooking needs and preferences. Depending on the dish you want to prepare and the type of stove you have, you may choose a suitable tawa that best suits your requirements.
What Can You Cook On A Flat Tawa?
A flat tawa is a versatile cooking pan used in Indian and South Asian cuisines. It allows for even heat distribution and is perfect for cooking a wide range of dishes. Here are some popular foods you can cook on a flat tawa:
- Roti/Chapati: The flat tawa is primarily used for making rotis and chapatis, which are staple Indian flatbreads made from wheat flour.
- Paratha: Parathas is a type of Indian flatbread that you can easily prepare on a flat tawa.
- Dosa: Dosas, a famous South Indian dish, are thin and crispy rice and lentil crepes. The flat tawa is ideal for making dosas.
- Uttapam: Uttapam is a savory pancake made from fermented batter and topped with vegetables. The flat tawa works well for cooking uttapam.
- Chilla/Puda: Chilla or Puda is a type of savory pancake made from lentil or chickpea flour. The flat tawa is perfect for cooking these healthy pancakes.
- Naan: Though traditionally cooked in a tandoor oven, you can prepare naan on a flat tawa at home. It results in soft and delicious Indian bread.
- Puri: Puri is a deep-fried Indian bread, but you can also make it healthier by using a flat tawa for shallow frying.
- Kulcha: Kulcha is another type of Indian bread, similar to naan, and can be cooked on a flat tawa.
- French Toast: You can prepare French toast by dipping bread slices in an egg mixture and frying them on a flat tawa.
- Pancakes: The flat tawa is perfect for making pancakes of different flavors and sizes.
Best Flat Tawa In India:
A high-quality flat tawa should have an appropriate thickness to ensure even heat distribution. Thicker tawas tend to distribute heat more evenly, preventing hot spots that may lead to uneven cooking. The flat tawa should have a smooth and even cooking surface to allow for uniform cooking of food items like rotis, dosas, and pancakes
Meyer offers a range of flat tawas that match all of the above mentioned qualities that make them a valuable addition to your kitchen. Here are the best flat tawas in India by Meyer:
Meyer Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Flat Dosa Tawa, 24 Cm, Black
Meyer Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Flat Dosa Tawa, 28 Cm, Black
Circulon Non-Stick Hard Anodized Flat Tawa, 32 Cm