The first time I had Puran Poli was at a friend’s place during Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations. And so I always associate this Maharashtrian delicacy to Ganesh Chaturthi whenever I have it now.
What is Puran Poli?
Puran poli is a flat bread stuffed with sweet lentil mixture commonly made from skinned spilt Bengal gram/Chana dal and jaggery. In Marathi language the sweet filling is called as Puran and the bread is called Poli. It can be stuffed with various other fillings as well, like this Dates and Sesame seeds Poli I posted a few weeks ago, which is a very healthy version of this traditional bread.
Traditionally, this Poli is made up of All Purpose flour ( Maida ), but I have used Whole wheat flour ( Atta ) in this recipe. Poli made of Maida is softer, but of course not good for your stomach and digestive system. You may do a 50:50 ratio for both the flours at first and if you like it, move towards preparing it with 100% whole wheat.
The type of lentil used for stuffing also varies region by region. In Gujarat , Karnataka and Tamil Nadu they usually use Arhar/Toor dal (Split pigeon peas) while In Andhra Pradesh, they use Chana dal ( Bengal Gram ) or yellow Moong beans to make this one. Whereas In Kerala, it is known as Boli and is again made with Chana dal. The main sweetening agent remains constant though, i.e. Jaggery.
Spices used also vary from state to state. In coastal areas like Kerala, Goa, Gujarat, nutmeg is used along with cardamom where as in rest of part only cardamom is used.
If you are still not sure what Puran Poli is – you may relate it to the stuffed Parathas in North India, only replace the savoury stuffing with the sweet one. And if you haven’t tasted it yet, it’s a must to be added to your list of “Gotta try it recipes!”.What !? you don’t have any such list ?? Well, you need to make one quick then.. only then you will be called a true foodie 🙂
Prep Time: 40-50 minutes ( includes pressure cooking time )
Cooking Time: 10-12 minutes
Serves: 6-8 people
Cuisine:- Maharashtrian, South indian
Spice Level: Sweet
Recipe Level: Medium
Shelf Life: Up to 12 hours at room temperature, up to 3-4 days in the Fridge
Serving Suggestion: With Raita, pickle, Payasam etc.
Nutritional Facts:- Rich in Proteins, Fiber and minerals.
Recipe Source: Veg Recipes of India
What you need?
For the Puran mixture (sweet filling ):
- 1 cup Bengal gram ( Chana daal )
- 1 cup powdered Jggery ( Gur/gud)
- 2 ½ cup of water for pressure cooking the lentil
- 2 tsp ghee
- 1 tsp fennel powder ( saunf)
- ½ tsp cardamom powder or 4-5 cardamoms crushed finely
- A pinch of Nutmeg powder ( jaiphal powder ) , optional
For the Poli dough:
- 2 cups whole wheat flour ( atta)
- Warm water as required for kneading
- 1 tsp Oil or ghee
- ¼ tsp turmeric powder (haldi),
- Oil or ghee as required for frying the puran poli
How to make?
First lets prepare the Puran to stuff inside:
- Wash and rinse Chana Daal well and soak in 2 cups of water for 30 minutes.
- Using the same water, pressure cook the Daal for just till 1 whistle and ten turn off the flame. Open when the pressure eases off
- Strain the Daal well, and reserve the remaining water. We will use this water to knead the dough
- Heat Ghee / oil in a pan, and add fennel powder, cardamom powder and Nutmeg powder to it. Roast for just 10 seconds and then add Chana Daal to the pan. Mix well.
- Add in the powdered Jaggery, and mix everything together. Let it cook for about 10-12 minutes on a low flame till the moisture gets evaporated and the mixture becomes dry. Don’t forget to stir in between to avoid it sticking at the bottom
- Once its all come together, thick and dry, switch off the flame, Keep aside and let it cool for a bit
- Once cold enough, mash the mixture with hands or masher, to get a smooth paste. Keep aside.
While the mixture is getting cooked in the pan, you may knead the dough:
- Add turmeric powder and Ghee/oil to the flour and mix
- Use the reserved stock from the cooked Chana daal and knead the dough with the same until it gets shiny and pliable
- Cover and let the dough rest for 15-20 minutes
Now, when we are done with the two main ingredients, lets start making the Polis: ( which is exactly the way you make Parathas by the way !)
- Pinch a medium sized dough ball, roll it on a dusted rolling board
- Place a portion of Puran mixture in the centre of the rolled dough
- Bring the edges together towards the center and join, pressing between your palms.
- Dust some flour again on the board and roll it again in a medium sized circle. Be very careful not to break the Poli since it will be very fragile at this point. If you do break a part, just dust some more flour and keep rolling.
- On a heated Tawa/grdille spread some ghee/ oil and roast the rolled Poli from both sides until its properly cooked with little brown spots.
- Serve them hot or at normal room temperature with extra dollop of Ghee on top !
Tips and Notes:
- Like I stated above, you may use a combination of flour ( Atta and Maida ) to prepare this Poli or only one of the two.
- The stock that we get from the cooked Chana Dal, can be used to make a lot of different things. Like traditionally Maharashtrians use it for making katachi amti (thin tempered dal) or you may just add it to your curries or Chapathis.
- Adding turmeric to the Poli dough is optional, but it brings that nice yellow colour
- To make a VEGAN version of the same, simply avoid Ghee and use Oil instead.
- You may also use milk while kneading the dough instead of water, that will enhance the subtle sweetness of the Poli
- You may add some sugar as well if you are not that comfortable with all-jaggery taste. Reduce the amount of powdered jiggery if you are doing the same. if you are trying it first time, and you don’t use Jaggery that much in your diet I will suggest go for half jiggery and half sugar so you get the hang of it.
- Do not cook the boli for too long,if you do so it will turn hard.
- To get soft Polis ,the dough should be sticky and soft. Make sure that you do add oil or ghee to the dough and that you keep it covered for some time.