Whole Wheat and Banana Fritters | Undan Pori | Banana Bonda

Undan Pori - banana bonda
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I remember coming  home  after a  long  day of  school –  trust  me  it  was LONG –   and  munching  on these  banana fritters  while sipping  a  hot  cup of  chai.  The  In case you are wondering, I had a  very Indian   upbringing –  evening  chai is  in  our blood.  Well those  were  the  days, now  if want  these I  have  to make  them  myself.  No, I   am not  complaining,  these are  super easy to make.

Undan Pori - banana bonda

So here is undan pori  – a satisfying  and  filling after school snack.  These are  fritters  made with  whole  wheat  flour  and  bananas – in other  words whole  wheat banana  fritters.    Mashed  bananas   and  a  pinch of  baking  soda  keeps   these soft  and  spongy  while  jaggery   adds a  little  sweetness.  What I love  most, as a cook , that I don’t have to plan ahead. The ingredients for the batter are pretty much pantry staples.   It was  one  of  the  go  to  recipes   when   kids  in the neighborhood  used  to  gather  in our living  room.

It is  very common  to find  bananas  for  breakfast  and  snack  in  south India.   There  are  snacks, both  sweet and  savory, made  from  bananas  and  their  close  relative – plantains.  This is a  recipe  that  uses over ripe  bananas. If  you are tired of  making  banana  bread  give  this a  try.   Banana  bread  recipe  and undan pori  recipe use similar  ingredients,  but  undan pori uses   more nutritious  ingredients.When  fried   correctly  these  do not  absorb  much   oil either, keeping the   calories   low  as  well.

Unda  in Malayalam means  ball  and  pori   refers  to  anything   fried.   Literally  this  translates  to  something  that  is   round  and  fried !   It  is  also  called   Gundu –   loosely translated  it  means  round , fat :-).    This  was a  favorite  for  tea stall owners,  and  at times   they   Gundu  they  make  were  sturdy enough to  be  used as  cricket balls. When made  right  these are light, fresh and  delicious. For  tea  stalls  this  was a  great  way to re-purpose any left  over  rice  and  wheat  mixes  for  breakfast.  There is  always  a  market for  fried  sweet  (any)thing!

Undan Pori - banana bonda

Technically you could  mix water , sugar and flour together and  fry  to make a  sweet  fritter. Adding  bananas  to the  batter  makes  it  more  moist and  sweet.   These  kinds o f fritters – where veggies or  fruits  are  mixed  with  flour  and  fried  are  called  bonda in South India.  So you might   find  these  being  referred  to as banana bonda  or  sweet  bonda  !

Back in Kerala  when  mom  makes  it, she  uses  the  small bananas – like  the  manzano or   apple  or  lady finger  bananas.  These  have  a  slightly different  flavor  and  some  even have a  little  tang  to it.   There is  a  more  involved  recipe  using  similar  ingredients – unni appam.  The  traditional recipe for unni appam  is ever so lightly leavened  with natural  yeast.

Undan Pori  on the other hand  resorts  to  a  pinch of  baking  soda.   The  batter  is  made with a  high proportion of wheat  flour and  a  little rice  flour.   Rice flour is  added  for  crispness.  You could  change  the  proportions , but   if  using  more   rice flour  increase  the   bananas  and   the leavening.  The  higher  proportion of  the  wheat  flour keeps  the  fritters  soft  inside and prevents  it from hardening  immediately.

Making Undan Pori - banana bonda

Usually the  tea shop undan pori will be  spherica  and  mad e with a  sot dough.   But   these  do not  look  like  the  perfect  balls, to be  honest  these  resemble alien figurines  or  my  early (ahem! ) attempts  at  clay  modelling.   The  reason is  that  I make   teh mix  into a  thick batter than a  soft  dough.  The higher proprtion of  water  makes the  fritters  more soft and spongy.  More over  this  makes  the process  hands free – no rolling or kneading the  dough !

So here is the recipe !

5 from 3 votes
Undan Pori - banana bonda
Undan Pori
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
30 mins
 

Easy banana  and  whole  wheat  fritters.

Course: Snack
Cuisine: India
Author: Syama
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 C Whole Wheat Flour See Notes
  • 1/4 C Rice Flour
  • 1 -2 Ripe Banana See Notes
  • 1/2 C Grated Jaggery See Notes
  • 1/2 C Grated Coconut See Notes
  • 2 Pods Cardamom
  • 1 Pinch Salt
  • 1 Pinch Baking Soda
  • 1/2 C Water
  • Oil As Needed To Fry
Instructions
  1. Take all the  dry ingredients  in a  bowl  and  mix  well together. Add  coconut and sliced  banana. Mash the banana into the  mix  with the  help of  a  fork or  spoon. Add  grated  jaggery, cardamom powder   and  water   to make a  thick batter (See Notes for jaggery). 

  2. Let the  batter  rest  for 15 minutes. 

  3. Add enough oil in a  pan  to  cover  the  bottom  by about 1 inch and heat.  Drop a little batter  into the  hot  oil.if  it  sizzles  and  slowly rises up to the  top  the oil is  at thet  temperature. If  it  burns  turn the  heat off  and  let   the  oil cool a  little  before proceeding.  If  there is  no  vigorous  activity around  the  dropped  dough the  oil is  not  hot  enough.  Heat longer  and  try again. 

  4. Drop the  batter  by spoonfuls  int the  hot  oil.  Fry over  medium heat  flipping once  or  twice  to  brown  evenly on all sides. 

  5. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain them on kitchen towels. Serve warm.

  6. These are  best  served  fresh.  Once  cooled  store in the  fridge  in an airtight container for  up to 2 days.    Warm  before  serving .

Recipe Notes
  • These can be  made  with  all purpose  flour  as  well. 
  • Use ripe  bananas.  When using  small bananas  double  the  number. 
  • If  using  blocks of  jaggery or  when unsure  of  the  purity of  jaggery melt  it  in 1/2 C  warm water  and  strain. 
  • When  jaggery is  not available  use brown sugar.
  • Fresh  or  dried  coconut  can  be  used  in this  recipe. 
  • I prefer  dried coconut as it  provides a nice  textural  contrast.
  • The  consistency of the  Undan Pori batter  can  change  from  loose  dough to   thick batter.  The  thick  batter  makes  for  softer  fritters. 

 

See   why   I love  making  these (almost) as much as  eating  them !

NEVER MISS A RECIPE – FOLLOW ME ON :

Undan Pori - banana bonda

 

Looking  for  more  snack recipes ?  Try  these

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    6 thoughts on “Whole Wheat and Banana Fritters | Undan Pori | Banana Bonda

    1. These looks so good and something so new to me! I always have ripe bananas on the counter and even my pickiest of kids will eat anything I throw them in, so for sure this recipe is a winner! Thanks!

    2. I have to say I am really impressed by this recipe- I love flavours and these Undan Pori sound so flavourful- will definitely make them very soon. 👍👌

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