Tota Puli is my choice for T in the A to Z Bengali Sweet Series. There are some traditional sweets starting with T such as Talsansh Sandesh, Tangail Cham Chama, while I also came across Tripti, a Sweet shop version. For a long time, I was hooked on Tal sansh Sandesh as this one seems to be very traditional and popular. However, I couldn’t find a recipe to make it and all the pictures I saw didn’t give out much. The other two options were also not so feasible. I was almost giving up on getting a proper dish until I landed here and read about Tota Puli. This seems to be a traditional Bengali Sweet losing out on its popularity.
This is a fresh paneer / chhana kneaded and made into a dough, stuffed with sweetened khoya. It is then rolled out as a Puli and then deep fried, before being soaked in a Sugar Syrup. After soaking for a while, the sweet is served as such with nuts garnished. As the recipe wasn’t very clear at few stages, I had to arrive at my own measurement after reading on how it is prepared. I had a tough time keep the stuffed khoya intact. Maybe this needs some resting time for it to harden. I somehow managed to deep fry without breaking it as it was written this tends to get broken while either deep frying or during soaking in sugar syrup.
Tota Puli is the last in the series of deep fried and sugar soaked Bengali Sweets. If you scroll down further you will get to see my huge vessel having all the deep fried Bengali Sweets. I made a huge batch of sugar syrup and the entire 6 liters of milk was made into chhana and kneaded. I took a portion of about 1 cup fresh chhana to make different dishes like the Jilapi, Lyangcha, Nikhuti Payesh, Pantua. I made about 6 pieces of each dishes, only Nikhuti and Pantua was more in number because of the size. Apart from family, I even took the whole lot to my colleagues and it was over within minutes.
As with all Paneer Based Bengali Sweets, you need to make fresh soft Paneer/Chhana and then knead it well.
In this A to Z Bengali Sweets for Protein Rich dishes:
A for Aam Sandesh
B for Bhapa Sandesh
C for Channar Puli
D for Danadar
E for Elixir Sandesh
F for Fruit Sandesh
G for Gajarer Sandesh
H for Hot Chocolate Sandesh Truffle
I for Ice Cream Sandesh
J for Jilapi
K for Khirkadam
L for Lyangcha
M for Malai Sandesh
N for Nikhuti Payesh
O for Orange Sandesh
P for Pantua
Q for Quick Rasmalai
R for Rasgulla
S for Sita Bhog
Step By Step Pictures for making soft Chhana for Bengali Sweets
Step by Step Pictures for kneading the chhana to a soft texture.
Step by Step Pictures for making Tota Puli
Step By Step Pictures for making Sugar Syrup
The entire batch of deep fried Bengali Sweets.
Tota Puli | How to make Bengali Tota Puli
For the Paneer Layer
1 cup Paneer / Chhana / Cottage Cheese
2 to 3 tbsp Flour 1oo gm
1 tbsp Ghee
A Pinch Baking Soda
For the Khoya Layer
1/2 cup Khoya
1/2 cup Sugar powdered
A pinch Red Food Colour
for the Sugar Syrup
1 cup Sugar
2 cups Water
Cooking Oil for deep frying
How to make Tota Puli
For the Paneer Layer
Make the fresh soft chhana for making Bengali Sweets
Knead till you get tiny granules.
Take the portion required to make Tota Puli and add baking soda and flour by a teaspoon and start kneading it. Flour should be added by small quantity as it depends on the moisture of the chhana on how it would require retaining the shape.
Knead till you get a dough that’s soft and can hold the shape. Remember you will be making a puli to the size that’s almost 2.5 to 3 inches in length and half inch width. Once you have kneaded, keep it aside.
For the Khoya Layer
In a bowl, take the khoya, sugar and food colour. Mix well and make small balls.
Assembling the Tota Puli
Divide the paneer dough into equal balls.
Divide the Khoya dough into equal balls. If it is difficult to handle, refrigerate for a while till the khoya is easy to handle.
Now flatten the paneer dough into a disc, place the khoya over it and enclose completely as you would do any stuffed balls.
Then gently roll over the plate to get a thick rope of about 1/2 inch width. Make the ends pointed as a puli. Complete the rest.
Heat the kadai with oil and gently drop in the pulis and deep fry on all sides.
Making the Sugar Syrup
Melt the sugar with water and make a syrup that is not very thick like Jalebi or too thin as Rasagullas. The syrup will have to be little thicker similar to Danadar, as it’s not let to soak for long and is served as a separate sweet on its own.
Serving the Tota Puli
Once the syrup is done, drop the deep fried Tota Puli and let it soak for a couple of hours.
Then drain the tota puli, garnish with nuts and chill until serving.
The original recipe asks you not to soak in sugar syrup for long as it might break. Mine was intact after a couple of hours as well.
The Tota Puli is juicy and oozes out sugar syrup when you bite into it.