Our community is extremely fascinated by puranpoli like flatbreads with assorted stuffing. Starting with the badaam / kaju polis on shravani somvaar to these sheera stuffed everyday variants.
I never really cared much for these as a kid, since they were always cooked on a ‘vaatichi chuul’ – i.e. A kerosene fuelled stove with a wick. I hated the fumes that filled our old kitchen when my mother and grandmother stood over it for hours when these were made.
Although my mom tells me that the chul helped keep the temperature of the griddle constant and the sanjurya never charred and hence was her favourite.
As usual, keeping in line with our quirky eating traditions, these are never served as dessert or snack, but typically paired with a spicy mutton curry for a Sunday lunch when we have some guests over.
Here’s the traditional recipe right out of my 80 year old copy of Gruhini Mitra.
The recipe I’ve used today was shared by my dear friend Ashwini Kothare and is her MIL’s. I must say it worked really well.
Ingredients (yields 14 sanjuris)
For the filling
Rawa (sooji/semolina) – 2 measures
Sugar – 2 and ½ measures
Water – 4 measures
Nutmeg and Cardamom powder – ½ tsp
Saffron – a few strands
For the dough
Refined flour (maida) – 2 measures
Wholewheat flour (aata) – ½ measure
Salt – a pinch
Oil – 2 tbsp
For the dough
Knead the dough ingredients except oil with water to a soft pliable dough. Add the oil and let it rest for at least 1-2 hours.
For the filling
Heat water and add the spices (nutmeg, cardamom and saffron). Add sugar and bring to a boil.
Once the syrup is boiling, add the semolina a little at a time and keep stirring continuously ensuring that no lumps are formed.
Once all the semolina is mixed into the syrup, keep cooking it slowly on a low flame till the syrup is completely absorbed by the semolina. This needs to be done over a medium to low flame so that the rawa is completely cooked and at the same time, doesn’t stick to the bottom.
Continue cooking till the mixture comes together and forms a ball. The right consistency to switch off the flame is when the spoon you’re using to stir the mix stands in the mixture without falling over.
At this point, take the mixture (saanja) off the flame and cool completely in a greased thali.
Divide both the dough and the filling into equal ball-like portions.
The filling needs to be stuffed into the dough carefully and sealed so that it doesn’t break open while rolling out the sanjuri.
Now flatten this gently and roll out into thin even 8″ discs.
Roast these on a hot griddle over a low flame.
Unlike puranpolis, these are not allowed to brown. They’re roasted slowly, maintaining the white colour of the maida.
Spread some melted ghee over these once roasted and fold in half.
Serve the sanjuris with a spicy mutton curry or usal. These keep well without refrigeration for 3-4 days.