Puri (Fried Indian Flat Bread)

puri

Puris are flat bread that can be made savoury or spicy and puff up into balls when fried (if cooked and rolled out properly). Puris are considered to be a little treat, something different to the normal rotis. These savoury little balls were a little bit of naughty food, something that was not really healthy because it is fried as opposed to roasted. It used to be eaten mostly on special occasions or just to make a slight difference to the normal meal. Puris are good eaten as a snack or for breakfast / lunch or as a accompaniment to curries, or with sweet foods such as kheer (rice pudding) and shrikhand (made with yoghurt and sugar, saffron & nuts or fruit added to it). They also go well with mango pickle and equally with a nice hot cup of tea.

I remember my mother telling us to learn how to roll out small round shapes and allowing me and my sisters to make a few which used to be such an achievement when we actually came to eating them. Our father would help with the frying and always used to try and assure that each of the puris would become small round balls of yummy food. Last year while visiting my older sister in Hong Kong we made puris together and her younger daughter was helping us make little hearts and flowers shapes. My son enjoyed that, so now when ever I make at them at home he helps and makes little star shapes and ‘puri men’ and of course the cut-out of his hands. It is so much fun and then he says to everyone ‘I made them’ 🙂

puri_2

Puri (Fried Indian Flat Bread)

I use yoghurt and ajwain seeds (caraway) as it gives the puri an added flavour and richness. If you do not have the ingredients or do not like the taste of ajwain then you can remove these from the ingredient list. I like puris with some spices so make them as below, however you can also remove the spices and make them with just salt.  Another alternative, while combining the ingredients to make a dough, is to add cooked chopped spinach to make green puri’s, or finely grated beetroot to make red puris.

Ingredients

Preparation time: 10 mins      Cooking time: 30 mins      Makes: 15 to 20 puris

1 cup whole wheat flour

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp chilli & turmeric powder

1/2 tsp ajwain seeds crush slightly

1/4 cup yoghurt

water

sunflower oil for deep frying

1) Make a soft dough by mixing all the ingredients together, use water as required to make a fairly soft dough and let it rest for 10 mins.

2) If you are making traditional small round puris then divide the dough in equal parts and then roll into long  tubes (sausage like shapes), with a sharp knife cut into 2 cm pieces and keep aside. Roll on a flat surface with some oil to help you roll them make them about 4 to 5 cm in diameter. Make a few and keep aside ready to be fried.

3) Heat the oil in a wok and start to fry the puris 2 or 3 at a time, gently slide them into the hot oil away from you and with a skimmer (jaro or slotted spoon) gentle press them into the oil one at a time this will help them to rise. After a minute or so turn them over and cook on the other side until golden brown. Remove with the skimmer and place on kitchen paper to absorb the excess oil. You are ready to serve as you like.

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4 Responses to “Puri (Fried Indian Flat Bread)”

  1. parita Says:

    Wow i love these puris..they look so cute in those lovely shapes 🙂

    Kiran ~ Thanks, it is fun making puris in different shapes, especially his hands 😀

  2. Linda Says:

    I have recently started learning to make puri. I got recipes from the internet and make small batches at a time, trial and error with different flours and different oils. I have found I like the Duram wheat flour the best … but have not found an oil that gives me the same taste that I have experienced on my travels to India. None of the websites I’ve looked at give a recommendation of a specific oil. If someone could give me a recommendation of a good oil to use, I would appreciate it – that way I can stop buying small trial bottles of oil 🙂

    Today, 23 February 2010, when I was experimenting with puri again, I thought ‘Wouldn’t it be wonderful if I could put caraway seeds into the dough mix.’ When I searched google, I found this recipe. It sounds wonderful and looks delicious. I will try this recipe as soon as I get what oil to use figured out.

    Thanks for any help you can give me,
    Linda

    Kiran ~ It is always good to experiment, in India mostly ground nut oil or vegetable oil is used. Sometimes even cotton seed oil, however now mostly the world over sunflower oil is good. The other oils will not work as well as they all have different heating points and the taste and smell change significantly. I hope this helps 🙂 As for the flavouring you can also add herbs like (dhana) coriander finely chopped with the stalks as well, for a fresh taste, or add fenugreek leaves which will give it a slightly bitter taste. Good luck with the experimenting and I hope it works out for you, please feel free to ask any more questions if you need to.

  3. Anne Says:

    This is one the simple and testy recipe. I will try it soon. The little cute girl in the above picture made this recipe more authentic.

    Kiran ~ It is a very simple and feel good food, reminding you of childhood times when you did not have to worry about eating fried food :). The picture is of my son before his mundan 😉

  4. Bread Lover Mommy Says:

    Those look so cute, I think my kids will have a blast making them too. We’ve been seeking out ethnic recipes for this week, and this is definately going to be one of them. Thank you!

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