PuranPoLi is the epitome of a Maharashtrian woman's cooking skills [Probably, along with Ukadiche Modak]. I have made Puran Poli Gujarati (using toor daal) and Mangaloori style (Yellow colored due to turmeric powder) but I always postponed making traditional Maharashtrian Puran PoLi. Just the very idea appears very daunting to me! But I wanted to make Puran PoLi for my blog so I ventured out. I had to gather all my courage. This is my very first Marathi Puran PoLi and I do realize that in order to make Puran PoLi like my grandmothers used to make, I still have a looooong way to go. :-) But I wanted to share my efforts. So here it is -
For those who find making Puranpoli as daunting as I do, I have a little secret. If I can make it, so can you!!
I have quartered our family recipe and converted it into cups and spoons since it was easier for me to follow it that way than comprehend the metric measurement [Kgs and Gms]. My mom guided me through this process.
Maharashtrian Sweet Bread
2 cups chana daal
8 - 10 cups water
2 cups Jaggery powder
1/2 cup wheat flour [Aashirwad or Annapurna brand]
1/2 cup maida/all purpose flour
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp oil
5-6 green cardamoms, peeled and crushed
1/4 tsp crushed nutmeg
Suggested Accompaniments (Must haves!)
Sajook Toop/Clarified butter
1. Wash chana daal and pour in a deep, heavy bottomed saucepan, adding water. Bring to boil. Switch gas to low. Simmer till chana daal is cooked. You will see some foam floating on top. Remove it from time to time using a ladle. Discard the foam.
2. After the daal is cooked, drain the water using a sieve. Do not discard this water. Save it for later use. We are making the traditional Kutachi Aamti with this water.
3. Now return the drained daal back in the saucepan. Add jaggery. With the back of ladle, try to mash daal and mix with jaggery. Keep on stirring till jaggery is melted.
3 -a) Notice that Puran is not yet ready. There still is enough moisture so the ladle doesn't stand straight.
3- b)Keep cooking till the mixture appears dryish. When you place a ladle in the daal-jaggery mixture, it should stand straight. This is the most traditional test to know that "PuraN" is ready. Mix in cardamom and nutmeg powders.
4. Pour the daal-jaggery mixture a.k.a puraN into the food mill known as puraN yantra. Rotate the lever to make the shredding of the puran so there is not a single grain of daal. It should be a smooth mixture. Set aside.
5. Knead wheat flour, maida using water as needed. Make a smooth dough. Add oil and keep kneading till it is elastic. This is a very important step. Cover and set aside.
6. Make 5 uniform balls of the dough. Make 5 uniform balls of the puraN. There will be extra puraN for later use. Note that a size of the puran ball is about 3 times more than that of the dough ball.
7. Roll a small and uniform disc with the dough ball. Stuff the puran ball inside this disc. Take the edges to the center so that puran ball is completely covered with the dough. Make sure that the coating of the dough is uniform all around the puran ball.
8. Using rice flour for dredging, roll the dough ball into a thin and large poLi.
9. Heat a big pan, tawa , griddle. Using a rolling pin, gently lift the puran poli and place on the hot tawa.
9 -a) Cook on the medium heat. Flip and cook on the other side.
10. Gently, take off the poLi and fold and place aside. Proceed with the next poLi.
11. Serve with saajook & rawaL toop/homemade clarified butter.
1. PuraN poLi is always served with a dollop of toop/clarified butter or a bowl of milk. However, puran poLi by itself is completely vegan.
2. Use fresh cardamoms and nutmeg and powder and grate them respectively for fresh flavors. Do not use the readymade powders.
3. Some homecooks add sugar instead of jaggery or a mixture of jaggery and sugar.
4. With this proportion, there will be some extra "puraN". You can use it for making various dishes like Modak, Katachi Aamti, Tel PoLi.
Characteristics of a good PuraN PoLi
1. It should be big but thin.
2. It should not get too crispy but it should be soft.
3. The stuffing (puraN) should be uniformly distributed.
4. The stuffing(puraN) should not ooze out.