I have known Kalyani (MomChef) for few months now and when she asked me to do a guest post for her, I was extremely happy that she thought about me in the first place. So there I was breaking my head for a week to find something traditional to post. Among the various ideas she gave for guest posting, I was particularly drawn to the one where she asks “how I perceive India from US especially on Indian food”.
I have to admit that given the place I reside the only thing linking India with me is food. It gives me a sense of satisfaction and a feeling of “home” when I make things from scratch since that is what most of us grew up with. Even my 3 year old understands that I make yogurt at home and when she sees me heating up milk, she asks me if I am making yogurt. I am not expecting or hoping for her to do the same when she grows up given the fast-paced lifestyle, but at least she is exposed to a small bit of Indian lifestyle in my opinion.
So I finally decided on “Poli” which I feel has a lot of warmth and is part of festival menus like Pongal. Now the surprising part is that I have tasted poli only once and my mom never made it at home. I followed the recipe from a cookbook which K brought to US when he first started cooking. Making poli is like making stuffed paratha with the addition of ghee. Yeah, please don’t skimp on ghee as that adds a lot of taste. Poli is flaky, has the right amount of sweetness and is loved by most people. So let’s get cooking.
1 + 1/4 cups all purpose flour
A pinch of salt
A pinch of turmeric
2 tsp oil
Ingredients – For filling
1 cup channa dal soaked for 2 hours
1 cup jaggery grated
1/2 cup coconut
1. Do not stack the polis when they are warm as they stick to each other and break apart.
Take all purpose flour and turmeric in a bowl.
Using water make a dough. Let it rest for an hour.
Method – For filling
Bring water and the soaked channa dal to a boil and simmer until channa dal is cooked. Soaking reduces the cooking time a lot.
Channa dal is cooked. If there is any water left, drain it.
Mix until everything combines. Allow to cool.
Take in a mixie / food processor.
Grind without adding water.
Filling is ready.
Take a small ball of the dough and roll it into a circle. Place a small ball of filling in the middle.
Bring the edges together and pinch on top to keep the filling inside.
Heat a pan and add some ghee. Place the rolled dough. Smear some ghee over it.
Flip over and smear some ghee.
Flip over and cook until both sides are done. Can you see the brown patches?