This is one sweet that is made in some form or the other for some festivals and important family functions in Andhra.It is also call “poonam boorelu“. “Poornam” refers to the sweet filling. This can also be used to make Bobbatlu (also called puran poli in Marathi).
Unlike most other sweets that are served with meals, this is not a desert, but an intergral part of the meal itself.
I last attempted it last year for the Mangala Gowri Nomu. But it didn’t work out. 😦 Since then I have learnt better and tried again this year. Of course, there was a trial run on the previous weekend, which wasnt as bad as last year, but not really good either. With a clear feedback from hubby (too much jaggery), and suggestions of working around it from my ma-in-law I’ve finally got it right! 🙂
For the Filling:
- Soak the chana dal for about 1 hr and then boil till soft.
- Drain and set aside to cool.
- Pound the jaggery into a fine powder.
- Add 1/4 cup water to the jaggery and make a syrup and bring to single-string consistency.
- A simple way to figure this out is to put a drop is a small bowl of water. If the drop remains a blob that can be moulded with your fingers while in the water, then the syrup is ready. Longer, and the jaggery will become crystallize.
- Grind the chana dla with the elaichi to a fine powder.
- Now gently add the jaggery syrup to the chana dal and make into a dough. Too much jaggery will make the filling too soft.
For the Batter:
- Soak the rice and urad dal for about 1-2 hrs.
- Fine grind the mixture with minimal water (approx less than level in the mixer)
- Ensure the batter is smooth to touch, and not grainy.
- If it still feels grainy. as a bit of water and grind again.
- This is the same batter as for dosas. Do not add salt.
To make the Poornalu:
- In a large wok, heat oil for deep frying.
- Make the filling dough into small balls.
- Dip these balls in the batter, and drop into the oil for frying.
- Now this is the trickiest part: the ball is soft, and so is the batter, and you need to get the batter all around the ball, and you need to do this by hand… no fancy tongs allowed :). Takes practice!
- Once the poornalu have fried to a rich brown colour, remove from the oil and set into a serving bowl.
This is best enjoyed with ghee (clarified butter). Make a hole into the poornam, and fill it with ghee. The ghee enhances the flavours in the poornalu, and make from a yummy side dish with your meal.