(Refer to Daniel Jose Marie's tips below to get you
Boil the yellow split
peas in water with a pinch of turmeric powder and salt to taste, until
well cooked but not sticky. Strain the boiled yellow split peas and
reserve the boiling water for pastry use later. Blend the strained
yellow split peas until well blended but not watery. The blend must be
on the dry side rather than wet..
Sift the flour with
some salt to taste into a mixing bowl. Using the warm reserved boiling
water in small quantities, gradually work the pastry until very soft
but not sticky. Wrap in cling wrap and allow to rest for one hour.
Add the powdered cumin
seeds to the blended yellow split peas. Add some more salt to taste if
necessary. Mould the dough into small balls of a size sufficient to
roll out into the pooris. Using a finger make a hole into the centre
of the dough balls and carefully place in one teaspoon of the yellow
split peas mix. Close the hole by pushing in the sides. Roll out the
dough balls in flour and carefully roll out into as thin circular
pooris as you possibly can.
Heat up a flat saucepan
of a size sufficient to hold the pooris. Brush the pan with oil and
place the pooris in. Cook on one side until slightly puffed up and flip
onto other side until just cooked. About half a minute in all. Do not
overcook or the pooris will harden.
Serve hot with blended
tomato or coriander chutneys (see recipes above).
Hint: Dhall pooris may
be wrapped individually in aluminium foil and frozen for later use.
Place in microwave between kitchen papers and warm up individually for
thirty seconds only.
Notes: Personal tips received from
Daniel Jose Marie:
"My mum (Marie Claude) and I practised
making dahl purri this weekend with a lot of progress. I had a go on
Sat night and it didn't turn out right. Too hard and a bit like a
pancake. But on Sunday, the result was great. I gave it 7/10 if
compared to what you can buy at La Gare in Vacaos.
A few tips:
Cooking the split peas - no great secret there. Add some salt to the
water and cook till soft enough to chew. Make sure you have a good
grinder that will to pulverise the grain properly. A blender or food
processor won't do the trick. You need a coffee grinder or something
as powerful. When ground, add quite a bit of anis & cumin. Of course
this is to your taste.
For the dough, use the liquid from the dahl. Take care when adding
salt to the flour because the liquid will be salty. Otherwise we
made it just like paratas dough. We let it sit for 30mins and then
kneaded it again just for 2 minutes or so. The real trick was
putting the ground dahl in the ball of dough. First take a small
ball of dough the size of a squash ball. Use both thumbs and make a
pit in the middle (it'll tend to shrink back). Put the dough with
the pit in it in your left hand (I'm right handed). Put a spoon of
ground dahl in the middle, and then use your left thumb to pack the
dahl powder into the pit. Let the bottom of the pit expand through
your left index and ring fingers. Add some more dahl and push again
with your left thumb. When it feels like there enough dahl in there,
close the pit by bringing all the edges of the pit together to a
point and squeeze together. Keep squeezing and bringing up some
dough from the sides up towards the centre on top of the ball.
Put the ball on a well-floured surface, flour the top a bit and roll
till quite thin. You'll see the spread of the dahl in the purri as
it rolls out. If the spread looks uneven, keep going for this one
and do better with the next lot.
For cooking: Brush oil on a pan at medium heat. Put the purri on the
pan and brush the topside lightly with oil. For us what happened for
the first time (after 10 or so goes) was that the purri started to
bubble, and when we turned it over (after 15-20sec or so seconds),
it kept puffing up like a soccer ball. Quite amazing to see.
Cook for only 15-20sec on each side. When cooked, store just like
paratas - in a newspaper lined, sealed container.
We had it with chatini of tomate, ail, cotomilli, huile and some
piment confit. The result was outstanding - texture, colour,
flavour. Criticisms were they were a bit harder than usual DP's and
a tad too salty. Next time we are going to try less salt and less
cooking time, otherwise very pleased indeed. Dewa here we come!
Good luck to anyone else that tries. Its a tradition that
non-resident Mauritians can't afford to lose."
Daniel Jose Marie
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