Pholourie are a popular golden, savory, turmeric-infused, deep-fried dough balls that are sold by Street Food vendors and roti shops.
In Trinidad, we have three primary types of pholourie: a light flour pholourie, a denser 100% split peas version, and a combination of flour and split peas. I have already shared the flour version here, and the split peas version here, which is used in a popular side dish and Diwali or prayers/pooja favorite, carhee/kurhi.
In this recipe, a batter is created using dried split peas, flour, and simple but popular seasonings, including bandhania, garlic, and hot pepper. The split peas are soaked overnight, then blended with aromatic seasonings and added to all-purpose flour along with turmeric, baking powder, and yeast. Water is gradually added to create a batter which is whisked until fluffy. After proofing, pinches of dough are scooped out, shaped using a unique but challenging hand movement, dropped in hot oil, and deep fried. Pholourie are enjoyed with tamarind chutney, boiled mango chutney or raw mango chutney.
Dhal and flour pholourie are more than just a snack; they are a taste of Trinidadian culture and tradition. These golden, soft, and chewy balls of flavor, with their spicy and aromatic profile, will transport you straight to the vibrant streets and homes of Trinidad and Tobago. So why not bring a piece of the Caribbean into your own kitchen by trying out this fantastic recipe? Your taste buds will thank you!
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Soak and blend the dhal:
Begin by soaking the yellow split peas (dhal) overnight, allowing them to absorb moisture and soften. The next day, rinse the dhal and place it in a blender along with 1 cup of water, bandhania, garlic, and hot pepper, if you prefer a spicy kick.
Prepare the battery:
In a separate bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, instant yeast, baking powder, ground turmeric, brown sugar, and salt. Stir in the seasoned ground split peas mixture, creating a vibrant and flavorful batter.
Whisk and Rest:
Gradually add warm water to the batter, whisking vigorously with a fork or your fingers until it becomes smooth and somewhat fluffy. Cover the bowl with two damp paper towels and allow the batter to rest until it more than doubles in size, usually taking 1-2 hours. This resting time is crucial for achieving light and airy pholourie.
Heat the oil:
Heat 3–4 cups of oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Ensure the oil is hot but not smoking; this is vital for even cooking.
When the pholourie feels light and turns a golden brown color, remove it and place it on a paper towel-lined tray. To ensure they are cooked inside, you can break one open.
Serve and enjoy:
Dhal and flour pholourie are best served with mango, bandhania, or tamarind chutney, adding an extra layer of flavor. Any leftovers can be wrapped in a paper towel, placed in a resealable bag or airtight container, and refrigerated for up to a week.
Recipe calculates calories based on total amount of oil used to fry the pholourie, which are evidently not consumed, therefore calculations may be incorrect.
Calories: 576kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 45g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 13g | Monounsaturated Fat: 28g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Sodium: 198mg | Potassium: 296mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 34IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 2mg