Thursday, April 19, 2012


‘Uppittu’ is made on religious occasions. It used to be more common than 'boli' with our ancestors – mainly because they were not experts at rolling out ‘parathas’. 'Uppittu' is made by spreading with the hand. The ingredients are slightly different; also the dough and of course the taste! Also you will require a couple of banana leaves to make them.

For the dough
Maida – 1 glass
Saffron color / turmeric powder – a pinch
Oil – 2 – 3 tbsp
For the filling
Kadala paruppu (Chana dal) – 1 glass
Jaggery – 2 glasses
Grated coconut – 2 tbsp
Cardamom powder – 1 tsp
Ghee / oil for making the ‘uppittu’

Mix the maida with a pinch of turmeric powder and 2 tbsps of oil and then add water little by little to make a loose (not stiff) dough. Add some more oil if required and blend well and set aside.
Wash the chana dal, soak it in water for half an hour and pressure-cook it for 3-4 whistles.
On cooling, drain off the water and grind to a fine paste along with grated coconut in a blender / food processor.
Heat ½ glass water in a kadhai and dissolve the jaggery and strain off impurities.
Bring the jaggery syrup to a boil and add the ground chana dal paste and keep stirring.
Turn off the stove when the water has completely evaporated.
After 10 minutes add cardamom powder and mix well.
Make 10 balls – the size of a big lemon.
Take a couple of banana leaves (9”x8” each), wash and wipe them dry.
Smear them with oil and use each one for making an ‘uppittu’.
Smear your hand with oil and take a lemon-sized ball of maida dough and spread it into a small circle with your fingers.
Place the dal filling, cover from all sides and start spreading it out with your oily fingers and hand carefully till it is evenly spread out into a 5” diameter circle.
Make two more ‘uppittu’ like this and then start cooking it on the tava.
Heat a ‘tava’, grease it with ghee / oil and then place the banana leaf over the tava and gently transfer the ‘uppittu’ with a ladle on to the tava. Keep aside the banana leaf for reuse.
After 2 minutes, turn the ‘uppittu’ and add ghee.
Turn again and add ghee – till it is cooked well on both sides.
Repeat with the rest of the ‘uppittu’.
Serve hot / cold.

You will need only 2 / 3 banana leaf rectangles as you can reuse them for making ‘uppittu’.
As the banana leaf will be touching the hot tava while transferring, it is not advisable to use plastic sheet instead!
Rolling out as ‘boli’ is easier for the ‘paratha-experts’!

‘Boli’ is the more popular cousin of ‘Uppittu’ these days as we are in the habit of making stuffed parathas. And we don’t have to go hunting for banana leaves!

Makes 10-12 bolis

Maida – ¾ glass
Wheat flour – ¾ glass
For the filling -
Chana dal – 1 glass
Sugar – 1 ½ glasses
Cardamom powder – 1 tsp
Saffron strands – a few (dissolved in a little warm milk)

Mix maida and atta well. Add 2-3 tsps of melted ghee or oil and mix well.
Add required water and knead well into a soft dough. Set aside for an hour.
Pressure-cook chana dal (for 3 whistles) till tender.
Strain off the water and allow to cool.
Add sugar to it and blend together in a food processor to a fine paste.
Transfer the paste to a kadhai and heat, stirring well.
Add the saffron-in-milk and continue to heat till the water has completely evaporated and the dal mixture is dry. Add a tsp of ghee and cardamom powder and stir well.
Allow to cool and make big lime-sized balls (around 12-15).
Divide the dough into balls slightly smaller than the dal balls.
Roll each atta portion into a small puri, place the dal ball and fold from all sides and seal the edges. Roll out like aloo parathas.
Heat a tava and cook the puran boli, adding ghee on both sides till golden brown.
Serve hot with more ghee (if desired).

Instead of using sugar entirely, you can use half jaggery and half sugar. 
Some add grated coconut also to the cooked chana dal and grind.

 © Copyright 2011. Brinda Balasubramonian.