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Mauritian street food: Dholl Puri

Mauritian street food: Dholl Puri

The beloved street treat known as Dholl Puri in Mauritius weaves a tale that is as complicated as its folds and as colourful as the spices it contains. This culinary masterpiece depicts a scene of cultural fusion and historical relevance and is inspired by the 19th-century narrative of indentured laborers from various parts of India coming on the shores of Mauritius under British colonial rule.

The history of Dholl Puri is directly related to the diaspora's voyage since these emigrants brought traces of their native cultures with them in the form of recipes and culinary customs. These workers created a cuisine that honored tradition while embracing originality by incorporating local foods from the island while preserving the spirit of their origins.

The split pea filling, affectionately referred to as "dholl," an homage to the legume-heavy Indian cuisine, is the core of the Dholl Puri. However, as Indian spices and Mauritian flavors blended together, this dish went beyond its original shape and reverberated with the nation's multicultural orchestra.

Dholl Puri discovered its rhythm in the bustling Mauritian streets and transformed from a comfort food for migrants to a jewel of street gastronomy. Excited food enthusiasts were attracted by the aroma wafting through the air as skilled hands operated griddles to create these flatbreads with precision. Dholl Puri woven the threads of Indian heritage and Mauritian soul together because of how easily accessible, mouthwatering it is, and how culturally significant it is.

Preparation Time

2 hours and 50 minutes




For the Dholl Puri dough:

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt


For the split pea filling (Dholl):

1 cup yellow split peas (soaked overnight)

2 cloves garlic (minced)

1 teaspoon turmeric powder

1 teaspoon cumin powder

1 teaspoon curry powder

1 small onion (chopped)

Salt to taste

Vegetable oil


Prepare the Split Pea Filling (Dholl):

  • Drain and rinse the soaked split peas.
  • In a large pot, add the split peas and cover with water. Allow it to simmer for about 30 minutes and drain any excess water.
  • Heat a tablespoon of vegetable oil in a pan over medium heat. Add onions and garlic. 
  • Add the cooked split peas to the pan. Add turmeric powder, cumin powder, curry powder, and salt. Mix well and cook for a few minutes.
  • Use a spoon or spatula to mash the split peas slightly, cook for a few minutes, remove and set aside.

Prepare the Dholl Puri Dough:

  • Combine the all-purpose flour and salt in a bowl.
  • Gradually add water and knead to form soft and smooth dough. 
  • Divide the dough into small balls. Coat each ball with a bit of oil and cover with a damp cloth. Allow the dough balls to rest for about 30 minutes.

  • Cook the Dholl Puri:
    • Take a dough ball and roll it out into a thin circle on a floured surface.
    • Place a spoonful of the split pea filling in the center of the circle.
    • Carefully fold the edges of the dough over the filling to encase it completely, forming a filled ball.
    • Gently flatten the filled ball and roll it out again into a thin flatbread.
    • Heat a skillet over medium heat. Place the rolled-out dough onto the skillet and cook until small bubbles appear on the surface.
    • Flip the Dholl Puri and cook the other side until light golden brown spots form.
    • Remove the Dholl Puri from the skillet and place it in a clean cloth or paper towel to keep it warm and soft. Repeat the process for the rest.
    • Serve the Dholl Puri with vegetable curry, Mauritius chutney and more.