August 14, 2016

Poori Bhaaji/Poori Subji/Puri Bhaji

(1) Poori

My tryst with Poori/Puri began when as kids we would attend marriage functions and the only purpose to agree to go with our parents was food :) Ok I admit, the purpose hasn't changed much till today. Poori and various exciting pubjabi side dishes..mouth watering paneer gravies and aloo gobi and what not. Guess these days Naan and Kulcha are more popular in marriage/reception functions. 
That's about Poori. But Poori Bhaaji/subji translates to a rustic meal of 3 or 4 pooris with hot dry potato masala (colour: yellow) - find recipe below - and some chopped raw onions. As children, my brother and I would love to devour poori bhaaji in restaurants. Not anymore, restaurants serve them too oily and the look of the pooris itself fills you with guilt. My best memory of poori bhaaji outside home is at Zunka Bhakar outside CST station in Mumbai. No fancy chairs-tables, no ambience, order and buy yourself your choice of food from the limited menu and there you go. Ah yum!
Initial period of my marriage, poori has always been a saviour when we called anybody for lunch/dinner. Why? I took quite a long time to perfect chapatis that were round, soft and most importantly, stayed soft till it was time to eat. **puppy face**   Pooris were much much easier, roll many roundels and set aside and fry one after the other mindlessly. After all, deep fried = unhealthy = very tasty. All said, it's a really tasty 'bread' for breakfast or lunch or dinner :)
At home, now I make poori when I am out of options for lunchbox or when we need a change from the usual rice and chapati. It is not a regular affair but we completely indulge whenever it is made. Maybe that's why I don't make it often.. ;)

  1. Poori can soak up a lot of oil if the dough is too soft i.e. excess water. The dough for poori is  required to be harder than that of chapati/roti yet easily pliable. 
  2. While rolling, if you dust the dough with too much flour/atta, the oil in the pan/kadai will have residue rendering part of the oil useless.
  3. Poori can be made with 100% whole wheat flour or 100% maida/all purpose flour or 50-50 of both flours. Differences would be lighter colour and slightly softer & chewy pooris with maida. We at home use only wheat flour to make poori.


Whole wheat flour/Atta - 2 cups   - Yields 14-16 small sized pooris
Water - half cup
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

How I prepare:
  1. Add salt to the flour and mix roughly. Add the water slowly and knead well with hands. If the dough feels sticky add more flour and make a firm dough.
  2. Place the prepared dough in a container and let it rest for at least 15 minutes. Resting will help the dough become softer and easy to roll.
  3. Take small parts of the dough, work in between palms to get a smooth ball of size slightly bigger than a marble. Roll into roundels of about 8 cms. Do not worry about all these sizes. There is no standard size for poori, chapati, roti, naan. Just rewind your memory to the last time you had poori at your friend or aunt's place or at the restuarant, recollect the size and follow your instinct. :)
  4. It is better to roll out all the pooris and then fry each one instead of doing both the jobs together; unless you have a helping hand with the frying.
  5. Once you finish rolling, make sure the oil is hot. If the oil is not hot enough, the poori will turn out to be flat and not puff up. Drop the poori slowly and press it gently with the slotted ladle to help it puff up and turn it to fry on the other side, remove from oil and place on a plate with tissues to soak up excess oil.
  6. Enjoy hot pooris with the modest potato bhaaji - recipe given below - or any side of your choice!

(2) Potato Bhaaji

  This is the same bhaji recipe which  is posted in the Masala Dosa recipe.

     Before you begin:

  Boil 3 potatoes in a pressure   cooker. Peel and mash.


3 Potatoes - boiled and mashed
1 Onion
Turmeric powder - 1 tsp
Hing/Asafoetida - 1 pinch/tsp
Ginger - 1 inch size
Green chilli - 1
Curry leaves - 5-6
Coriander leaves - 4 sprigs 
Salt to taste

How I prepare:
  1. Heat oil in a pan. When the oil is hot, add mustard seeds.
  2. As they splutter, add finely chopped ginger, green chillies and curry leaves and a pinch of asafoetida (hing).
  3. Then add 1 sliced onion, turmeric powder and salt. When the onions are translucent, add the mashed potatoes.
  4. Mix well. Since it’s a dry bhaji and the potatoes are already boiled, turn the flame off when all the potatoes are well coated with turmeric and heated well.
  5. Garnish with coriander leaves.
Also try Poori with Shrikhand and that's it.. you just tasted some awesome soul food :) 

1 comment :

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