Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Simon Bryant's Banana Pooris

Reading is something I barely get time for anymore during school term, a forgotten pastime amongst a flurry of assignments, after school meetings, tests to study for and bags to pack, but when the holidays come I like to get back to it from time to time, visiting the library and coming home heavy bagged with a selection of books. However, when people talk about reading, fiction with the odd biography is what they think of, but my personal preference is for something quite different: cookbooks!

Cookbooks may seem an unusual choice for a teenage girl, especially in the age of  google and allrecipes, taste.com and blogs, but something about the old fashioned simplicity of a cookbook appeals to me, the little tidbits of a story amongst the photos and recipes. And so, when I got a book voucher I knew immediately where it was going to be spent: the food section!

The 2 books I selected were 'Cooking with Quinoa: The Supergrain' by Rena Patten (which I mentioned HERE once before) and 'Vegies' by Simon Bryant, both of which I love! This recipe for Banana Pooris (a 'deep fried flatbread popular in India and Pakistan' comes from the latter, and when I chose it I had no idea what to expect, as it's one of the few recipes in the book without a photo.

These taste a little like a doughnut, and despite there being no sugar, they're quite sweet from the banana. I served them as an afternoon snack, hot out of the pan, and they were greasy and indulgent but delicious. The book also recommends serving them with a curry which I'm yet to try, but really intrigued by so I'll let you know how it goes when I do.

What's your favourite cookbook?

Mia :)

Banana Pooris
Based on:  Recipe pg 87 of 'Vegies' by Simon Bryant

55g Wholemeal Flour
225g White Flour
Large pinch of salt
2 tbs flavour neutral oil or ghee
175g banana puree (about 2-3 small/medium bananas, mashed until smooth)
Flavour neutral oil for frying

1. Sift the flour into a bowl, add the salt and oil or ghee and rub together until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Add the banana puree and 2 tablespoons of room temperature water and combine to form a ball.

2. Knead the dough for about 10 minutes until elastic, then shape it into a ball. Let the dough rest in an oiled bowl covered with plastic film for atlas 1 hour.

2. Divide the dough into 8 and roll each piece into a ball. Sprinkle the benchtop with a little flour and roll out each ball into a very thin 10cm round. In a small wok over medium heat, add enough oil for one poor to be submerged and heat until just shimmering (about 180˚C/350˚F).

3. Fry the poor in the hot oil, one at a time. The poori should puff up immediately on one side; working quickly, turn it over using tongs and cook the other side, about 15 seconds per side. (If the outside of the poori becomes really dark but the centre is still doughy, you have not rolled it flat enough.)

4. Gently remove the poor from the oil, holding it vertically and carefully shaking off excess oil, holding it vertically and carefully shaking off the excess oil. Drain the poori on paper towel, turning it over after a minute or two to prevent pooling on the top side. If you are not using the pooris immediately, wrap them loosely in a tea towel or napkin to keep them warm.

5. Server the pooris hot as an accompaniment to savoury Indian dishes, or on their own as a sweet snack.


  1. The Meat-Free Monday Cookbook is my favourite at the moment!

    1. I know! The recipes are all so great, and the mealplan format works wonderfully.


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Mia xo

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