Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Recipe: THENGAAI BOLI (தேங்காய் போளி)

Dough with oil in the centre
This is one of my favourite sweet dishes. I learnt this from my grandmother. Pattu Paati was quite an expert at making this and this rare treat was made maybe once or twice every year as there is a lot of work involved. This was especially so as our family was quite big and we used to have guests too on a daily basis.

I made this recently a couple of days after Ganesh Chaturthi and we all enjoyed this delicious treat.


Sweet filling (Poornam)
Grated Coconut (திருவிய தேங்காய்) – 1 cup
Jaggery (வெல்லம்) – ¾ cup
Channa Dal (கடலை பருப்பு) – ½ cup
Cardamom (ஏலக்காய்) – 8
Maida (மைதா) – 1 cup
Oil (எண்ணெய்) – 6 tbsp
Salt (உப்பு) – 1 pinch
Turmeric Powder (மஞ்சப்பொடி) – 1 pinch
Water (தண்ணீர்) – as required
Ghee (நெய்)– 2 tsp

Plastic sheet coated with ghee

1. Add water, salt and turmeric powder to the maida and mix well to make dough to the consistency of making rotis. Knead well for 10 minutes to make it soft. Make a hole in the centre of the dough and pour the oil in it. Cover with a plate and keep aside for 3-4 hours. This will make sure that the bolis turn out very well.
2. Boil the Channa Dal in a pressure cooker for 5 whistles, drain the water and keep aside.
3. Break the jaggery into small pieces, add a few spoons of water to it and boil it on slow fire. Once melted, filter the melted jaggery for impurities.
Poornam balls 
4. Take a saucepan and heat on slow fire. Add the melted jaggery, channa dal and grated coconut and cook for 5-6 minutes.
5. Cool the mixture, add the cardamom and run it in the mixture to make a smooth paste. In case the mixture is not firm, cook it in the saucepan until it becomes so. This forms the filling for the boli and it has to be firm to ensure that the bolis turn out properly.
6. Make small balls of the sweet mixture (poornam பூர்ணம்), the size of a big lemon.
7. Take a square of plastic and spread it on the stone that is used for rolling out rotis. You can use a milk pouch or the bread pouch that I did. The plastic needs to be thick. Touch your fingers to the ghee and apply thinly on the sheet.
Preparing the boli
8. Heat an iron griddle or a non-stick one on a slow fire. The latter is better as you don’t need to use oil or ghee at all. Can make the bolis dry.
9. Mix the oil and dough well. It must be quite loose by now. Take a piece of dough the size of a small lemon and spread it in a small circle with your hand on the plastic sheet.
10. Place the ball of sweet mixture at the centre of the dough. Lift the edges of the dough around the poornam. Ensure that the dough covers the poornam completely.
11. Now flatten this gently with your hand as much as you can. Make sure that the poornam does not flow out of the dough.
Lift the edges of the dough 
12. Lift the plastic and gently move the boli to the non-stick griddle.
13. Cook well on both sides till they turn a golden brown.
14. Remove and store in a container.
15. Serve with melted ghee.

The melt-in-the-mouth Thengaai Boli tastes simply delicious. It tastes best hot. The bolis can be stored for maximum 24 hours.

The boli is spread, transferred to tawa and cooked till golden brown


  1. Yummy! the pics are also nice
    i have never tried this even once, will have to try sometime

    1. Thank you Lak
      I also made this after a very long time. Ore nostalgia making this along with Paati :)
      Boli thattaradhukku I was allowed in those days and it was such an honour ;)

  2. Nice recipes you are posting.

    Girija Rajeshwaran