Pragri is a Sindhi sweet specially made during the Holi festival. It is somewhat like gujiya with mawa filling but the outer covering is multi-layered, flaky and very crispy. It needs a lot of patience to make this sweet as it is time consuming. The frying has to be done on very low flame. For best results use only desi ghee or dalda. The oil does not give the required crispiness to the layers.
All these years I was living away from India and missed these traditional dishes. This Holi I decided to make pragri at home. I have childhood memories of preparing all these traditional sweets with my grandmother. I would sit next to her assisting her with all the preparations which is why I am able to make all these goodies now. She would explain everything to me in detail while making and give me all the tips. I am really happy that the pragris have come out nice and crispy as they should be. I make the satpura sweet very often. The procedure of pragri is somewhat similar.
For the outer covering:
Maida ............. 2 cups
Desi ghee ....... 2 tbsps
Water ............ for kneading ( I use cardamom flavoured water)
For the Paste:
Maida ........ 1/4 cup
Desi Ghee or Dalda ... 4-5 tbsps
For the syrup:
Sugar ...... 1 and 1/2 cups
Water ...... 1 cup
Green cardamoms .... few
Saffron ........ few strands
Rose water .... 1 tbsp or Rose essence - 2-3 drops
For stuffing :
Sweet mawa ....... 1/4 kilo ( I used the store bought ready mawa )
To make mawa at home see the recipe - HERE
Almonds .... few chopped
Rose petals ... handful (fresh or dried)
Silver varq .... as needed
Dalda or Desi Ghee
(You may use oil if you want to avoid using these)
To make the sugar syrup put the water and sugar in a pan. Bring to a boil and add the saffron strands, split green cardamoms and allow it to simmer until it is thick. Switch off the gas and add the rose water or essence as mentioned.
Take the maida for the outer layer, add the ghee and knead with the cardamom flavoured water to make a soft dough. Cover and set it aside for resting.
Make the paste by mixing 1/4 cup maida and 4-5 tbsps ghee.. It should be of the spreading consistency (like butter at room temperature)
Now take the dough and make tiny portions rolling 4-5 at a time.
Roll them out like tiny roundels of the same size
Now with your finger tip spread the paste on each one.
Place them one on top of the other until you finish 4 of them. Cover the 5th one on top without the paste as you are again going to roll them together.
Carefully roll out the bunch of 5 roundels together to make them bigger one about the size of a puri.
Spoon the sweet mawa in the middle and add some chopped almonds. Using your finger apply a little water or milk around the mawa so that it gets sealed when you fold it.
Fold the pragri carefully pressing the portion around the mawa with your finger. Take care not to seal the edges as they should puff up when you fry it.
Now heat the ghee or dalda or oil for frying. Reduce the flame and drop the pragri carefully. Using a pair of kitchen tongs try to open up the edges of the pragri with light hands. Don't overdo it as it might open up completely.
Turn it few times and fry on very low flame until it is very crispy and golden.
Repeat this process to make and fry all the pragris. Now dip them in the sugar syrup nicely and remove on a plate.
Place them in a serving platter and garnish with silver varq and rose petals. You can store them in a clean dry container after they are completely cold.