Bobbattu, a flakey Indian bread stuffed with sweetened yellow lentils is a traditional sweet from Southern India made during special occasions and festivals. The dough is called poli and the stuffing is called purnam. This is one our families favorites. Pulihora and Bobbattu is a classic combination made during any festival. To tell you the truth I don’t like sweets. This is the exceptional one. Thanks to my mom who used to run behind me and make me eat this delicacy. Bobbattu is often served with a splash of warm clarified butter.
Bobbatu is also known as puran poli in Northern India.
Ingredients to make Poli
1 cup maida / all purpose flour
Pinch of salt
Water to make dough
1/4th cup oil
Procedure to make poli
In a wide bowl mix maida , salt and water (around 1/3rd -1/4th cup) and knead into a dough, this will be of a chapati dough consistency. Now slowly add oil to the dough and keep kneading until the oil is absorbed into the dough. Cover the dough and rest it for 45-60 minutes. By this time the oil will separate from the dough. The dough will be stringy and elastic.
Ingredients for Puranam/Puran
1 cup Channa dal
1-1 ½ cup sugar
1/2 tbsp Cardamom powder
Procedure to make Purnam
Wash and soak channa dal for 20-30 minutes. Pressure cook channa dal with little water, less than 1/4th cup (3 whistles). Once done drain all the excess water completely. Make sure that there is no water and cool down the cooked lentils completely. Mash this cooked dal using a potato masher. Add sugar, cardamom powder and mix well.
Procedure to make Bobbattu/Puran Poli
Divide the dough and puranam into balls of equal portions (lemon ball size). Take one portion of poli(dough) on a wax paper/foil/zip lock bag (traditionally banana leaf is used), apply oil (around 1 tsp) and roll out the dough into a small round with ur hand, you can use rolling pin. Keep the purnam ball in the middle and cover it by bringing the dough corners together. Dip your fingers in oil and flatten the ball (dough and purnam, like stuffed paratha) gently pressing the poli with your fingers from the edges to the center into to a circle, as thin as you can without tearing it (make sure the dough and the stuffing are distributed evenly).
Now carefully invert the poli using a spatula or with your hand on to a warm tawa/gridle. Cook both sides until the color changes into light brown color. Flip and drizzle little ghee on both sides and remove from heat. Repeat the process with remaining purnam and poli. Serve hot or cold.
You can use jaggery (grated) instead of sugar and wheat flour instead of maida. If the purnam is runny, keep in the fridge for some time and then use it. You can make the purnam ahead and refrigerate and use it when needed. You can use a rolling pin to roll the dough but I’m more comfortable with my hands. You can also use tortilla presser to press it but you should be very gentle and careful while pressing.
You can refrigerate the cooked polis for 2-3 weeks in fridge or stack up the cooked, cooled polis layered with wax paper and freeze. It stays good for 2-3 months. Defrost and re-heat just before serving.
Look forward for step by step pictures. I will be updating soon.