Friday, June 30, 2017

Poori (Whole Wheat Fried Puffed Breads)

As delicious as they are, I am usually reticent about making Poori as they are deep fried. But when I do make them, the trick to keeping them from being too oily is to keep the oil hot enough (but not smoking) to cook them quickly so they don't sit in the oil and absorb much of it.

Although Pooris are eaten all over India, they are paired with saucy potato curry, chana/chole (garbanzos cooked with spices), Halwa, Aamras (Ripe Mango puree), etc depending on the region. The usual family favorite at our house was the potato curry. Try pooris with a drizzle of honey or maple syrup too for satisfying a sweet tooth!

Makes 16 Pooris - About 4 Servings


2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
1 Pinch of Salt
Water, about 1/2 cup

Oil for deep frying


Mix the flour and salt in a large bowl; add water carefully to form a stiff dough. Flour tends to dry up or absorb water so when making the dough add about 3/4 of the water at first and then add more if needed by teaspoons until just enough. Knead well until smooth and elastic.

Roll the dough by hand into a cylinder and pinch off or cut into 16 pieces. Knead the dough briefly and shape into small balls; keep them covered so they do not dry out.

Roll out each ball into a thin circle - about 4 - 5 inches - with a lightly oiled rolling pin on a lightly oiled surface. Don't worry if the circle isn't exactly a circle - it could look like America, Australia or any other continent or island - all good fun!

Start heating the oil  for deep frying half way through rolling out the dough; add a small pinch of the dough to see if it is hot. If the dough sizzles, and rises to the surface quickly, it is ready.

Gently slide the circles into the hot oil avoiding splashing.

Immerse the edges of the poori into the oil gently with a metal skimmer (a shallow spoon with holes for the oil to drain); it will puff up.

When the bottom is golden brown, flip to cook the other side.

When golden brown on second side, remove and drain on paper towels. Stack the pooris standing on edge to drain well.

Pooris are best eaten while still warm although they are still good at room temperature.

Serve with traditional Saucy Potatoes or any dal (dried bean) dish like Chole, Rajma, Simple Dal, any vegetable dish such as Basic Potato Curry, or Winter Squash & Sweet Potato curry, pickles, a raita, etc.


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