Indian Street Food: Puran Poli/Hollige (Sweet Dhal Filled Bread) @VVPuram , Bengaluru

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The various names for the flatbread include puran poli (पुरण पोळी) in Marathi, boli (Malayalam/Tamil), bobbatlu/bakshalu (Telugu), holige (ಹೋಳಿಗೆ) and obbattu (ಒಬ್ಬಟ್ಟು) in Kannada, Obbatti, or simply, poli. Other day when we were at vvpuram/food street I happen to spot this person preparing obbattu and shot this video...A recipe for puran poli (as purana) is mentioned in Manasollasa, a 12th-century Sanskrit encyclopedia compiled by Someshvara III, who ruled from present-day Karnataka. 

Puran poli is made from chana dal or split yellow gram, plain flour, jaggery or sugar, cardamom powder and/or nutmeg powder, ghee and water. Sometimes toor dal is used in Gujarat. Toor dal or togari bele is commonly used in the state of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu as well. 

In Andhra Pradesh (bobbatlu or bakshalu) and other places, moong dal, chana dal or even a mix of lentils is used in some recipes. Other ingredients that may or may not be used are: nuts, dates, turmeric powder.

The method of preparation varies from place to place. Sometimes grated coconut is added in Konkan, Maharashtra. Coconut palm jaggery may be used. Similarly a mix or sugar and jaggery can be used as a sweetening agent. Normally nutmeg is used as a flavoring along the coast which is replaced by cardamom or sometimes both elsewhere. Nut, dates, etc. may also be added in this

Methods of rolling the stuffed dough also differ. It can be rolled using rice flour which makes the rolling very convenient. In some recipes flour is not used at all; oil or ghee is used to roll it into a flatbread instead. The rolled bread can be roasted with or without any ghee or oil, which sometimes is smeared after its completely cooked. In some places all-purpose flour dough is used after adding a pinch of turmeric which gives it a traditional yellow color.

The size and thickness of puran puri also varies greatly, in Gujarat where the stuffing used is toor dal, it will be small in size and thickness will be more, where as in holige with coconut stuffing it will be larger in size and with less thickness. Obbattu (ಒಬ್ಬಟ್ಟು) is very popular in Karnataka and is prepared on festival days.

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