“Holi Re Holi, Pooranachi Poli!” that was the slogan we used to shout as children, when our mothers made this delicious Pooran Poli, on Holi festival day! Pooran Poli is a sweet stuffed flat bread, stuffed with a delicious filling of boiled chick peas and jaggery and cardamom. Pooran means, stuffing, and Poli means Chapati or Roti in Marathi. So its a stuffed sweet roti! Holi was the only occassion when we got to enjoy this delicious indulgence! Here, at my inlaws place, this delicacy is made on a lot many occassions throught the year. It is ofcourse eaten in different combinations though. In a typical Maratha household, on Holi festival, Pooran Poli is made along with “Katachi Amti”- a curry made with boiled chick peas and ground masala of caramelized onions, garlic ginger, dry coconut. and served along with fried ragi papads, Onion Pakodas and piping hot rice! And when its Akshaya Tritiya, Pooran Poli pairs up with Sweet Aam Ras-(Mango Pulp). For others , it might be an unusual combo, but believe me, when I first tasted this combo, I instantly fell in love with it! Most find making this a very tedious process, but believe me, its all worth the effort! Afterall there’s nothing like, enjoying a traditional meal on a Festival Day with friends and family!
1 1/2 Cup/200 gms Chick Peas/ Chana Dal
1 1/2 Cup/200 gms Jaggery / Gur chopped
1 tsp Cardamom Powder/Elaichi Powder and Nutmeg Powder
1Cup Whole Wheat Flour ( sifted through a fine sieve) and a pinch salt
1 tbsp Ghee + for roasting For Katachi Amti
1 Cup reserved water from boiled chana dal ,with 3-4 tbsp chana dal
1 Medium Onion sliced
1/4 Cup grated, roasted dry coconut
3-4 pods garlic
1/2 inch ginger
2 tbsp Oil
1 tbsp Kala Masala
1 tsp red chilly powder Salt to taste
Knead a super loose dough using whole wheat flour, salt , oil and sufficient water. ensure its very soft and loose. Cover the dough for atleast 30 mins before using.
Add 2-3 Cups water to washed chana dal and pressure cook for about 3-5 whistles, or until completely cooked. The chana dal should be partially mashed and partially whole, but soft and cooked.
Now drain the cooked dal and retain the water , along with some cooked dal for making the curry if desired.
Now pass the Chana dal through a medium fine mesh or a sieve.
Now cook this dal with jaggery in a non stick wide pan. keep stirring until comes together in a lump.
Add cardamom powder and nutmeg and set aside to cool.
Pinch small portions of dough and the stuffing and keep aside. Reserve some dry flour for dusting. For soft and thin pooranpolis, its best to take dough and stuffing in equal portions.
For beginners ,its advisable to reduce the stuffing slightly, as it takes experience and skill to roll out the dough with the stuffing without letting the stuffing jet out of the dough. Roll the dough into small round rotis about 2-3 inch diameter.
Stuff the stuffing into the rolled dough and gather the edges and seal. Pat the stuffed dough lightly in between palms to get a Kachori like shape. Now roll the dough with the stuffing like parathas , gently, taking care not to let the stuffing break.
Heat a flat pan or girdle / tawa and place the pooran poli and roast lightly till small bubbles appear. Immediately flip and roast this side completely till nice and brown with little ghee. Apply ghee on the half cooked remaining side and flip.
Tips: If you want nice light and puffed pooran poli's:
•Ensure your stuffing is nice and smooth , without any lumps.
•Your dough is inice and soft.
•Ensure you gently roll out the dough , uniformly.
•Flip gently, preferrably using a wooden flat spoon.
Roast the sliced onions with garlic and ginger on a flat pan with a tsp oil till browned.
Cool and grind to paste.
Heat remaining oil and fry the paste till it releases oil. add kala masala, red chilly powder, salt and fry.
The spicy curry with rice counters the effect of sweet pooran polis with milk, thus balancing the meal Kala Masala is traditional masala predominantly used in northern Maharashtra, mainly,Nashik, Khandesh. It can be replaced with Garam Masala.