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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Boli | Obbattu | Puran Poli | Holige | Festive Recipes & Onam Wishes !!

Wishing all malayali's a happy and prosperous Onam,in advance !!
I know all are busy making up the menu and planning on dishes to be served for Onam sadya.I truly miss the zeal in Kerala during Onam though the nostalgic Onam memories is faded out.I got to celebarte very less Onam in Kerala but the fond memories that my parents shared had been a dear one.Nowadays,Onam is left out to just dressing up in mundu (a long garment tied around the waist with a simple twisted knot,like a dhoti) and shirt for men,ladies dressed up in set saree/set mundu(a traditional Kerala saree).Many shops are on sale during this time with some big prizes and offers.There are many pookalam contests,payasam contests and games fun going on around.The rush in buses,trains for Onam is incredible too.And above all,the price of vegetable takes a hike as the vendors make the maximum profit this week.Shops and houses are well decorated with lights and colors.Kids are on a short break from schools for Onam holidays.Ladies and kids join hands to decorate the patio with flowers,they make designs with flowers(pookalam) which starts much before.The banquet lunch is the most awaited time of the day that I eagerly wait on Onam.Though these are just a few lines about the auspicious festival and I don't wish to set in boredom for many who actually know all about Onam.So,let me hope everyone rocks this Onam in a safe and joyful way !!


Today's post is a festive recipe made in many southern states of India.So many names for one single recipe?? Sounds interesting right?? This is a recipe made in many different states with slight variations but the general procedure remains the same.Boli or Puran poli is a flat sweet stuffed bread like parathas but the outer covering is very soft and is made smaller than the stuffing.In some states sugar is added instead of jaggery.Some people add cardamom powder instead of nutmeg powder and the dal also varies with states.Toor dal or moong dal or a combination of both is also used instead of chana dal.

The first time I had was obbattu(puran poli)as a child during our stay in Bangalore.One of our good neighbours presented us on one of the important festive days(I think Ugadi) and we all liked it very much.Then,mom jotted the recipe from the neighbour aunty and made at home which came out okay but not as good as the hers.Then,I had boli in some of the marriages in Kerala when they serve it on the ela(banana leaves) for sadya along with paal payasam.That definitely tastes heavenly when the boli gets soaked in payasam and we glob it down the throat(makes me drool as I write this now).This had been in my try list for so so long and finally got to try my hands on it.This is my fist attempt which was very good in terms of taste and softness as per my H and kids but I was disappointed at the irregular shapes(not perfect round except for one or two).Practice makes things perfect,may be next time I can do things better in terms of shape.I just made a small batch as I didn't wish to waste if things went wrong.I was very happy that it tasted so good and were very soft.

PS:If you plan to make boli,make it on a free day as it definitely take time to get things correct.Also,read the notes before you make these.Also,let me clarify the fact that boli is prepared by dusting with rice flour not oil and sugar is used instead of jaggery(for authentic Kerala version).I have made puran poli(obattu) which is almost similar to boli except for the above two mentioned differences.


Ingredients
for cover

all purpose flour or maida 1 cup
turmeric powder a pinch
salt a pinch
*oil (vegetable /gingelly) 1/4 cup

for filling
chana dal /kadala parippu 1/2 cup
water 4 -5 cups

*grated jaggery  3/4 cup-1 cup
grated coconut 1/4 cup
*nutmeg powder 1/4 tsp(optional)
cardamom powder 1/2 tsp or 4 pods powdered

oil 1/3 cup (for rolling and drizzling)



Method
  •  FOR DOUGH- In a bowl,add flour,salt and turmeric powder.Mix well and add water as needed to knead in a sticky dough.Then,add half the oil mentioned(1/8 cup or 2tbsp) and knead the dough for about 6-7 minutes.The dough initially may look splitting in pieces when you add oil,but don't worry.Keep kneading and you may see the dough comes together as oil is absorbed until you get a soft pliable dough.Add the remaining oil(1/8 cup or 2tbsp) on top as a single layer and keep the bowl covered with a plastic wrap or lid.Leave to ferment for about 6 hours or overnight(atleast for a 4hour resting time is required to get soft boli,I left it for 6 hours).

  • FOR COOKING DAL-Wash the chana dal(or toor dal) and then add to a open pan or cooker.Add 4-5 cups of water and cook over medium heat.Keep checking the dal in between;press a dal between your thumb and index finger and if it mashes easily then its done).Switch off flame and then drain in a colander or strainer(collect the dal water to add to soups or use for making chapathi dough or some people make obattu saru).

  • POWDER THE DAL-In a blender jar,add the cooked dal and pulse it 4-5 times or blend without any water to get the powdered dal(powder it fine else the filling may seep out).To this,add *grated jaggery(refer notes),mix and keep aside.

  • MAKING FILLING-Heat a pan and add the coconut and dry roast till the moisture is dried out.To this add the chana dal-jaggery mixture.Heat on low until the jaggery stars to dissolve and the filling comes together,don't dry the mixture completely.Switch off flame and leave to cool.Keep covered until use.Make ten equal size balls once it is ready to be stuffed(don't make the balls before hand as it tends to dry out and it will be difficult to spread the filling).
  • FOR MAKING BOLI-Once the dough has rested for a minimum of 4-6 hours,then mix the oil with the dough that had been poured on top of the dough.Pinch out small equal ten portions(the dough can't be shaped like balls as its very soft and oily) and keep covered.Take one portion and place on a oiled ziploc bag/any transparent sheets/obattu sheets.Flatten lightly by your palm and place the stuffing in the dough(keep the remaining portions of dough and filling balls covered so that they don't dry up much),bring the sides together to seal.Add oil on top and cover with another ziploc bag or sheet.Using the palm of your hand,gently spread as much as you can.Add more oil if required so that it doesn't stick to the sheets and get the sides thinner(you can even dip the filled balls in rice flour instead of oil,give a nice coating with rice flour and roll using a rolling pin like we do for chapathi,saw a video in youtube where they show making boli like that).I preferred the oil method as I wasn't sure of the outcome.But for a less oil version,dipping in rice flour is good.
  • Heat a non stick pan and when it is hot,gently transfer the rolled discs taking care that the sides don't fold back or the discs don't shrink(remove the top ziploc cover and using your right hand gently flip it from the bottom ziploc bag).Wait till one side gets cooked on medium flame and then flip the other side,cook again.Drizzle oil on the sides and top.Flip on a plate and continue with the rest of the prepared dough.
  • Serve obattu/boli/puran poli topped with ghee/warm milk or paal payasam or semiya payasam(don't stack the prepared boli immediately,wait till its warm and then can be stacked).
NOTES
* I had bookmarked this recipe from here but I have slightly made changes in the original recipe and have used chana dal instead of toor dal as I love that taste more.
*The dough should be kneaded for 5-7 minutes and should be rested for fermentation atleast 6 hours or overnight.I prepared the dough first and rested for 6 hours and in the mean time,prepared the filling.
*I have used gingelly oil(nallenna) as it makes the dough softer.You can always use vegetable oil instead too.
*Be generous in adding oil and don't reduce the specified amount,more the oil the softer it is.
* I have used a mixture of both nutmeg powder and cardamom powder.I used 1/4tsp of nutmeg and 1/2 tsp of cardamom powder but you can omit nutmeg powder if you don't like the flavors.
* You can even add a pinch of dry ginger powder to the filling if you love the flavors.
* The jaggery that we buy here has no impurities once dissolved and strained and so I used grated jaggery.But if you are not confident of the impurities in the jaggery that you are using,then its better to dilute the jaggery in  1/4 cup water and then straining.Add the coconut to this strained mixture and let it get reduced on stove top.Finally add the chana dal powdered,mix well.
* The grated coconut which I used had long strands and so I would recommend pulsing that too to get smaller strands before making the filling or try to grate fine.In some places,coconut is omitted.
* The dough ball should be half the size of the stuffing that helps to get the cover thin and smooth.However the cover shouldn't be very thin nor very thick.
*There are obattu sheets available in market to roll it out thin.I have used two ziploc bags oiled and that works fine too.You may even try using banana leaves which should work fine too.
*Cook the boli on low medium flame as it may turn brown very faster and may not get cooked properly.Drizzle oil on the sides while cooking to get a neat glossy finish.
* Don't stack the boli one above the other when hot.Wait till its warm and then stack to retain softness.Also,keep it covered.
* If refrigerating leftovers,wrap in paper towel and store in ziploc bags.Refrigferation makes the boli hard and so a good steam cook is required the next day to yield the same soft boli and top it with ghee/oil. Enjoy !!

Just a peek in :)


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Wishing all a blessed Onam once again !!!