Chhole bhature is the ultimate Punjabi dish that has made its way through the hearts of everyone across India. When I was a kid, chhole bhature was the most awesome dish ever. Whenever we used to go out, someone at the table would always order bhature. My brother used to love the dish so much he would never ever have anything else whenever we ordered in or dined out. Years have passed and he still gets excited over it….he he he. In fact, my PG college mess used to have chhole bhature with vinegared onions as Sunday lunch and I used to look forward to it all the week. I would get up early on Sunday just to get my hands on the first serving. I was heartbroken when the mess changed the menu but that is another story.
The only drawback of chhole bhature is the bhature. The ones you get outside are big, brown and extremely oily and totally unhealthy. However, the ones made at home are pure white and very light despite deep frying in oil. No matter how many you eat, you will want more.
2 cups maida (plain flour)
1 cup curd
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp baking soda
Oil for frying
Mix maida with salt and baking soda. Knead with curd till you get a smooth dough. Maida does not soak water as easily as whole wheat flour so add the curd slowly. Add a little water if required. Cover the dough with a wet muslin cloth and leave for 2-3 hours. The dough will rise. Knead it again to smoothen it. Make small balls and roll them to form circles. Deep fry in oil. Serve hot.
Tip: Instead of using curd, potatoes can also be used. Boil and mash potatoes and knead them with the maida. The potatoes also act as binding agent so use water sparingly and only if required. The potato bhature are more filling however, they absorb more oil.
To drain off excess oil, leave the bhature on an iron tawa/pan for a couple of minutes. Also, you can line a sieve with paper and then leave the bhature on it to drain oil. However, make sure the paper does not stick to the bhature.