Potham Panji – (Like Porous Cotton)

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Potham Panji – (Like Porous Cotton)

Dark thunder clouds are rolling fast and furious as my little one and I stand at the threshold seeing the school bus drop off my older kids. The wind is picking up and Mother Nature uncannily rids herself of all the dead leaves still hanging on the trees to herald in the most beautiful season in Virginia – Spring – Yes, plum trees, pear trees, cherry trees all burgeoning with blooms, the burst of forsythia in our side law, like sunshine, the red buds and camellias, the lilacs putting out little green leaves and buds, the daffodils (about the only thing the deer around leave alone) sprouting in clumps – heaven people – Not if you have allergies though – all this becomes enjoyment through closed doors – but with each passing year, i am getting wiser- start taking my Nasonex and Patanol way in advance so when the pollen from the oaks and the pines start flying in the air, hopefully it will not be as bad as it can and has been!

Well, the weather was stormy. A perfect time for fried food and served hot too. This one is probably a very unusual name for most of you – Please do let me know if any of your families called it by this name or have another name for it– but it was my mom’s signature – in a minute indulgence. I think the name comes from the fact that the inside is soft and doughy and porous because of the yogurt/ buttermilk – Otherwise, you can call it a cousin of urad bondas :)
I have added a couple of ingredients that I know amma did not use, and this will probably not gel well with at least a couple of my family members – but what is the use of writing a blog if one cannot improvise and experiment with ingredients that will only enhance the taste – right?


This is exactly what I did a couple of days ago for my kiddos who came home in bad weather and hungry after a long day’s school! It is criminal how many pounds they shoulder on their backpacks each day – History repeats itself – mom made these for us and now its my turn to pass on the pleasure of Potham Panjis to my children :)
1 cup all purpose flour or maida
1 cup of yogurt or thick buttermilk
¼ tsp hing or asafetida
2 tsp of chili powder of choice – I used  Suvaiyana Sambar podi (powder)
A pinch of baking powder
Things I added that are not part of the original recipe
½ red onion finely chopped
1 green chili finely chopped
1 handful of peanuts crushed into powder
1 tbsp cut cilantro
(Batter will be pasty)
Heat oil to fry and put bonda sized balls and fry
Serve hot
This is a stand alone dish – by which I mean it does not need any sides like chunteys or ketchup – unless of course if that is something you prefer

Serve and enjoy hot


Would like to send this to Gayathri’s Cookspot event – Walk Down Memory Lane and Taste of Pearl City’s AWED- Indian Cuisine Event

Logo for event


Posted on

March 26, 2011


  1. This is such a delightful snack for the kids…I love the name…bookmarking this.

  2. ooo, such a comfort food- especially for a saturday nite before the telly 😛

  3. nice spongy snack…..name itself inviting……

  4. perfect n delicious snack…

  5. perfect spongy snack!!

  6. A perfect snack on a rainy day.

  7. A perfect snack on a rainy day.

  8. Slurp..perfect for cold weather..
    My mom call it Gundu bhajji:-)Love it…Only prob is once I start..its really hard to stop munching..:-(

  9. The name intrigued me.. Pakora/bonda looks delicious, perfect for the rainy weather!

  10. Lovely snack…perfect with tea.

  11. Lovely and perfect tea time snack..looks yummy dear.

  12. A new recipe to me but looks very yummy. Feeling tempted to make this, thank you for sending this delicious snack to AWED :)

  13. Hey we call this mysore bajji and some call it 'sanyasi undalu' – don't ask me why the name :)..it has been lying in my drafts for ages..thx for reminding me to post it too :)

  14. YUMMAZING food, ma! Beast stuff!

  15. wat a fantastic recipe…sounds delicious..

  16. great snack on a rainy day.. it is similar to urad dhal vadai. looks delicious..

  17. Delicious. This is making me hungry. Thanks Priya, for sending this wonderful entry to my event.

  18. Wow the fries look delicious,perfect for cold weather.

  19. Super spongy fritters, feel like munching some..

  20. Potham panji looks sooper spongy and spicy… Just love them… :-)

  21. I can never forget this snack …there is a long story for this hmmmm…. pass on a plate to me too ..


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