Ok, so long requested Halwa Poori recipe is here. Read it till end and I have included make ahead tips as most of you asked. Halwa Puri and Tarkari is not only a traditional Pakistani specially Karachi’s breakfast but this is something which I grew with. You can find amazing Halwa Pooris in every corner of Karachi and it is hard to rate them because they all are amazing. However, in the commercial setup, they make it with white flour/all purpose flour and roll out a little but mainly stretch with their hands before flipping in the hot oil in a huge wok.
My mom used to make Halwa Poori very often. Usually our home which was a joint family system had lot of guests. And I remember that as soon as they arrived downstairs (we used to live on first floor), my mom’s wok would be on stove and dough knead in literally 10 minutes along with potato tarkari(gravy). I used to feel perplexed because I did’nt quite like the idea of her working in the kitchen while guests are sitting but she managed everything so beautifully with little help from me and my sister that the guests used to enjoy the hot pooris with condiments like tarkari, halwa and mince/qeema, kebabs or even kheer immensly.
The great thing about homemade pooris are that they can be made from wholewheat flour aka aata. The trick is to knead the dough medium soft and fry in very hot oil. I have not measured what temperature but when you place your palms above the wok, you can feel the heat and smoke. That is the key to have blown/phooli pooris.
Now years later when I serve them, guests not only enjoy but its quite amusing to see that they are curious how. I am a rebel Pakistani girl and I just do’nt like making rotis/chapatis and parathas not because they are time consuming but because of the sheer mess. The particles of flour really wreck my borderline OCD nerves. Give me Puris and I will make them happily. Another great thing about these pooris are that its dough can be used to make parathas and roghni roti. Quite versatile. Potato gravy/Aloo tarkari is really simple and everyone owns a recipe that just works well.
So lets talk about Halwa next. I like halwas/roughly fudge in English but since most of them take a lot of time bhoono/stirring, I always chicken out. But this one is exceptional. It is prepared in a jiffy and is match made in heaven for pooris. I am adding lot of tips in the recipe card so you can achieve traditional look and taste.
Making ahead tips
- I recommend making poori aata atleast an hour ahead, covered with a damp cloth in a box so it does not become dry. You can even do it a night before you want to serve.
- When your guests are due to arrive, you can make small balls/pairay and keep them covered again with damp cloth and in a box.
- Your wok should be ready with oil filled to almost half mark.
- Woks with a rounded bottom seems to work better and give required space to pooris to fluff up.
- I have not experimented with freezing the rolled out pooris or dough as yet but I am planning to do. So may be you wanna comeback after a month or so and check if I have updated the post.
- You can roll out pooris and lay them on big trays but again if they weather is too dry, they will get dry and if it is too humid they might become too soft to handle. So you can experiment if that works for you.
- Tarkari is easy as is but if you are serving in the morning or next day, you can place all ingredients in a sauce pan/pot and refrigerate till required. It just takes 20 mins for the potatoes to get tender so plan accordingly.
- Halwa can be made ahead as well and just needs to be microwaved/warmed prior to serving.
The above pictures are from the brunches I hosted in which I made Halwa Poori. I did a detailed post on how to host one efficiently step by step with sample menus and ideas. Part 1 here and Part 2 here.
- 2 cups Wholewheat Flour
- 2 tablespoon ghee/oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- water as required
- 1 cup suji/semolina*
- 1 1/2 cup sugar
- 3 cups water
- few saffron strands
- 2-3 green cardamom
- 1/2 cup oil/ghee
- yellow/orange color (optional)
- 2 medium potatoes, washed, peeled and cut in big squares
- 1 teaspoon cumin (zeera)
- 1 teaspoon nigella seeds (kalongi)
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds (rai)
- 1 cup water
- salt according to taste
- 1 teaspoon red chilly powder
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- In a large bowl put flour and salt. Add Ghee/oil and mix with your hands until combined.
- Start adding water slowly till it all comes together and forms a medium soft dough. The dough is the key which will allow you to make tge pooris without any additional flour or oil.
- Place it covered with a damp towel in an air tight container for about 1 hour. You can skip the damp towel if you are in a humid environment.
- Place a large wok filled with vegetable oil almost half full and heat.
- Make small balls from the dough about half the size of roti/chapati.
- Roll out with a rolling pin. We are aiming for 4 inches in diameter pooris.
- Deep fry and with a slotted spoon slightly press the pooris so they are completely immersed in the oil and starts to puff up. Immediately turn and fry for another 10 seconds. The pooris should not take more than 20 seconds in total to get color and puff up.
- Place sugar and water in a pan and heat till sugar dissolves.
- Heat ghee/oil with cardamom till it starts to splutter.
- Add suji/semolina in a pan on low heat and keep stirring until semolina is fragrant. It should not change its color.
- Then add the sugar syrup, all at once. Cook for 3-5 minutes*
- Remove from stove and place in a serving dish.
- Garnish with almonds pistachios if required.
- Place all the ingredients in a pot.
- Give it a boil and simmer on low heat for 15-20 minutes till potatoes are tender.
- Mash a little before serving.
- *If the smolina is coarse, it will take more time, if it is fine, it will take less time.