Science Behind Poori : Inflated Indian Bread




Introduction: Science Behind Poori : Inflated Indian Bread

I have been fascinated from my child hood of how the poori gets its shape...

  • How does air get filled inside a flat disc of dough?
  • How does it taste so Damn Good?
  • What is the chemistry involved in all this? &
  • How to make it!!?

Poori is a staple Indian bread which originated from the Indian Subcontinent. The fascinating thing about this dish is that IT PUFFS UP!! when we put a flat disc of dough in boiling oil, it magically fills itself in air by getting inflated in oil...

Here in this instructable I share with you guys all how to make a poori and discuss on how the science behind it works.

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Step 1: Gather the Ingredients

Food Articles:

  • Wheat flour : 2 cup (200 gms)
  • Cooking Oil : ~200 ml(Deep Frying) & 1 table spoon(mixing with flour)
  • Water
  • Salt : A pinch


  • Stove
  • Bowl for flour mixing
  • Frying Pan (Indian style, Ref the GIF)
  • Circular rolling board and Rolling Stick (Refer Gif)
  • Metal Ladle with Holes
  • Tissue

Step 2: Making the Dough

First we must prepare the dough for the poori. This is basically wheat flour and oil:

  • Take the desired amount of flour, Roughly (X) mg for one poori
  • Add a pinch of salt for taste
  • Mix the flour thoroughly and then keep mixing by slowly adding oil.
  • The dough will slowly turn solid
  • Once stiff enough gently beat and mix for another 5 mins.
  • Leave the mix aside for 20 odd mins.
  • Break the entire dough into small and equal chunks as shown (roughly x gms).
  • Oil the chunks a little and apply some wheat flour on the surface.

Step 3: Rolling to Size

  • On the rolling board take a chunk of wheat dough.
  • Press Gently with the rolling stick in the center.
  • And slowly roll TO and FRO making it flatter and flatter.
  • Aim for a circle and and roll as needed.
  • Don't worry If it is difficult. it will be difficult at first but in time it is easy to do, just needs some practice!
  • Once the circular flat pressed dough is ready, Repeat the process for all the chunks of dough.

Step 4: Puffing the Poori

  • Bring Oil to boil in the pan.
  • Drop one flattened disc of dough in the oil.
  • Press the poori in the oil using the ladle.
  • And there you have it, the poori magically puffs up
  • Take it out and place it on a tissue for removing excess oil.

Step 5: Science Alert!

I believe there is no such thing as magic. It is just unexplained science lurking.

The Science of how the Poori magically inflates is actually very interesting. There is complex chemistry happening to create that magical puff.

  • Remember all the water we poured in the flour to make the dough...
  • That is ton of moisture content stored inside.
  • The moment the flat disc of dough touches the boiling oil, the moistture in the outermost layer evaperates and bubbles up (bubbling image) and the outer surface hardens.
  • Few milliseconds later the moisture inside the disc of dough rapidly turns to steam, and it tries to escape, it exets pressure on the outer surface which results in swelling (inflating).
  • Take it out in the right moment and the poori retains its shape...

Step 6: Enjoy the Dish XD

Pop it!

Watch it deflate,

Add a curry for side dish and Enjoy!

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    Interesting. I have never had this kind of bread before. I am going to have to give it a try.