How to Make the Divine Puran Poli

My great grandfather used to say: “if you love eating something, eat it every day, making you sick of your favorite food and allowing you to be grateful for the variety of food on your plate.”

I love Puran Poli so much, that I’m not sure eating it everyday would make me love it any less. But I’ll take his sage wisdom to heart and savor all foods as equally and equitably as possible. 

Growing up, Ma would make this as my birthday meal and sometimes we’d compete on who could eat the most…I believe I still hold the record of six…no surprises there!

Puran poli is eaten throughout West and South India, but the technique I’m sharing with you has roots in Kathiawar. Puran poli is eaten with tuver ni daal (toor daal) and kobi nu shaak (cabbage). 

Kathiawari puran poli is meant to be enjoyed with ghee. In some places, your puran poli is accompanied by a small bowl of melted ghee to dunk your puran poli in…so indulge!

The recipe follows Ma’s method of using your senses to guide you in your cooking process. So don’t give up if it doesn’t come out perfectly the first time. 

Serving Size: 5



  • 2 handfuls of toor daal
  • 1 large serving spoon of ghee
  • 1 ½ – 2 large serving spoons of sugar
  • 1T – 3T nutmeg*, add according to taste



  1. Wash the daal at least three times, this helps reduce the amount of gas your body will create. 
  2. Put the washed daal in a pressure cooker with enough water to just cover the daal.
  3. After three whistles, turn off the stove and let the pressure cooker cool. 
  4. While the pressure cooker is cooling, knead the dough: 
    1. In a bowl, mix flour with about 2T – 2 ½ T oil (it should form clumps, but still be dry); 
    2. Slowly add water (about ¼ C, maybe less) and knead till the dough is soft and not sticky; 
    3. Let it rest for at least 15 minutes.
  5. Open the pressure cooker and remove any excess water.
  6. Blend the daal until it’s nice and smooth. 
  7. Then add ghee and sugar to the daal and cook until the daal doesn’t stick to the sides of the pot. 
  8. Add nutmeg (I like to crush my nutmeg in a mortar and pestle).
  9. Let the puran cool. 
  10. Once cool, form into 5 balls.

Assembly + Cooking

  1. Make 5 large balls from the kneaded dough and gently roll out. Should be about 3” – 4” in diameter (it should be thick like aloo paratha is thick).
  2. Place the puran ball in the middle and close. It should look like modak, but remove the extra dough/tail and gently press down. 
  3. Gently roll out. You should be able to see the puran, that’s when you know to stop rolling.
  4. Place on a hot tava and gently cook (medium heat) till it has golden polka dots on both sides.
  5. Slather with more ghee, eat, and ENJOY!

* NOTE: eating nutmeg causes drowsiness.

When not pursuing her passion project, Amma’s Cooking Company, you can find Anjali working at her nonprofit social enterprise job, learning to play the sitar, or reading a wonderful book. You can follow Anjali’s recipes on @ammascookingco.

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