Starting out as a thin patty of dough, puri fry up puffy and crisp and are the perfect accompaniment to saucy chana masala. Tapping the puri while it's floating in hot oil is a quick trick that ensures it puffs and browns evenly. To test if the oil is hot enough, pinch off a tiny piece of dough and place in the oil. If it immediately floats to the top and sizzles, it's ready. Although you might be tempted to roll the dough out ahead of time, roll and fry your puri one at a time for the crispiest, puffiest result as Hina Mody instructs, from decades of experience cooking and feeding loved ones.

Photo: Gerard + Belevender
Active Time:
35 mins
Total Time:
45 mins


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour (about 12 3/4 ounces), plus more for sprinkling

  • 1 cup whole-wheat flour (about 4 ounces) 

  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt

  • 1 teaspoon ajwain (ajowan) seeds (optional) 

  • ½ cup ghee, melted, or neutral oil

  • 1 ½ cups room-temperature water

  • Vegetable oil, for frying


  1. Stir together all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, salt, and, if using, ajwain seeds in a large bowl. Stir in melted ghee until combined. Gradually add 1 ½ cups water, mixing with your hands until just combined. (You may not need the last ¼ cup water; stop adding water when the dough resists absorbing it.) Knead dough in bowl until smooth, sprinkling with additional all-purpose flour as needed, about 5 minutes. (Dough should be slightly sticky to the touch, but not wet.) Pinch off sections of dough (about ¾ ounce each), and roll with your hands into 1-inch balls. (You should have about 34 balls total.) Cover with a clean kitchen towel to prevent drying out.

  2. Fill a medium-size deep skillet or a wok halfway with vegetable oil; heat over medium until a deep-fry thermometer registers between 375°F and 380°F, adjusting heat as needed to maintain temperature.

  3. Working with 1 dough ball at a time, gently roll into a thin, even 3- to 4-inch circle on a clean, dry work surface. Using a spider or a slotted spoon, place dough round in hot oil; immediately tap the puri a couple of times to briefly submerge in oil until fully puffed, 5 to 15 seconds. Flippuri; cook until golden brown, tapping occasionally, 15 to 30 seconds. Place puri in a large bowl lined with paper towels. Repeat process with remaining dough.

Make Ahead

Extra puri dough may be frozen in a ziplock plastic bag or an airtight container up to 3 months.


Find ajwain seeds at South Asian grocery stores or online.

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