Dates Obbattu

(Karanataka's Sweet delicacy, flat bread stuffed with aromatic dates mixture) 

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Prep Time: 30 mins
Cooking Time: 30 mins
Makes: 5-6

For Kanaka/Dough:
1 heaped cup Maida/All Purpose Flour
A big pinch of Salt
2-3 tbsp Oil
Ghee for frying

For Hoorana/Stuffing:
1 cup Dates, deseeded and quartered
1 tbsp Jaggery (adjust acc to taste)
1 tbsp Ghee
¼ tsp Cardamom Powder
A big pinch Nutmeg

Place plain flour and salt in a vessel and make it into stiff dough of chapatti consistency by adding little water at a time. Keep it aside covered with wet cloth for around half an hour.
After ½ to 1 hour, add oil and knead the dough till all the oil is absorbed and the dough becomes soft and elastic. Keep this dough aside for another half an hour or so.
Mean while, steam cook dates for around 10 mins till they become soft and mushy.
Cool these dates and place them in a blender with jaggery and blend them without adding any water.
Heat ghee in a pan and to this add ground paste and keep stirring on moderate heat for around five minutes. Make sure to stir at medium flame so that the stuffing doesn’t stick to the bottom of pan.
Mix in cardamom and nutmeg powder and switch off the flame. Let the stuffing mixture cool for sometime.
Make golf sized balls of dough and date stuffing by applying little ghee to your hands.
Grease an aluminum foil/banana leaf/thick plastic wrap with little oil and place maida dough ball in center.
Press the dough with your fingers and start spreading it to a circle stating from center, working towards the edge. Make poori sized circle of about 3 inch diameter and place date hoorana/stuffing ball at center. Close the hoorana/stuffing by pulling the dough on all sides.
Slowly press the dough with your fingers to about ½ cm thick and 6 inch diameter. Use little ghee/oil if the dough sticks to your fingers.
Heat griddle/tawa and gently transfer the obbattu to tawa and cook on both sides by applying little ghee till little brown patches appear and they are cooked well.
Serve warm with ghee and enjoy.

If you find it difficult to spread the dough with your hands then place another greased sheet on top of the dough and roll it gently using rolling pin.
The left over obbattu can be freezed once it is completely cooled down for about 3 weeks in freezer. Place a parchment paper in between each obbattu and place them in zip lock bag and freeze. When required, thaw and heat it using a griddle/pan and serve.
You can replace jaggery with honey or sugar based on your preferance and maida with wheat if you are health conscious.

Another Sweet recipe on Monsoon Spice using Date is Kharjura/Date Payasa.
Here is Richa's recipe for Poli where she adds pistachio powder to dates stuffing.

Labels: Dates, Karnataka food, Maida, Sweets