A quaint village in Karnataka is one of the places our ancestors called home. During their migration to Maharashtra, they carried with them a rich culinary heritage, one notable recipe being Aleepaak Pohe. This dish is a beloved street food favorite among the locals in Belgaum, a city in Karnataka.
It’s important not to confuse this dish with a popular ginger candy called Alepak. The name Aleepaak Pohe derives from the Marathi word for ginger, अलं (Ala), which is a key ingredient in this recipe. Another crucial component is roasted Bengal gram, known as pandharapuri daala or phutana in Marathi. Both these ingredients are known for their efficacy in alleviating symptoms of a common cold.
The Aleepaak Pohe recipe involves the creation of a savory laddoo called Phutanyacha Laddoo, made from ginger, chili, coriander, fresh coconut, lemon juice, and roasted Bengal gram. Traditionally, these laddoos were carried during short journeys and combined with dry ingredients to whip up a quick snack. I find it particularly convenient to carry these savory phutane laddoos during travels, as they provide a refreshing flavor and help prevent motion sickness.
This recipe is also child-friendly, involving no direct cooking over fire. It is also an excellent choice for working mothers keen on providing their kids with fresh, healthy snacks and for those seeking oil-free, vegan, and gluten-friendly options.
In Belgaum, Aleepaak Pohe is typically served with freshly squeezed sugarcane juice at Rasavanti Gruha, local sugarcane juice centers. The recipe is straightforward, requiring only 15-20 minutes of preparation time. The roasted Bengal gram laddoos can also be prepared in advance as a part of meal prep, stored in airtight containers, and used throughout the week.
- Indian Ginger – 3 tbsp
- Roasted Bengal Gram – ½ cup
- Spicy Green Chilies – 3 to 4
- Fresh Coriander – ½ cup
- Freshly Grated Coconut – ½ cup
- Black Salt – 1 tbsp
- Table Salt – 1 tbsp
- Roasted Peanuts – ¼ cup
- Thin Pohe – 2 cups
- Murmura – 1 cup
- Lemon Slice – ½
- In a grinder jar, combine the ginger, coriander, ¼ of the coconut, green chilies, black salt, and table salt. Grind the ingredients until a smooth paste forms.
- Now add the roasted Bengal gram to the grinder jar and grind again, but this time to a coarse paste.
- Transfer the mixture to a plate, add the remaining ¼ cup of freshly grated coconut, and mix well.
- From half of this mixture, shape lemon-sized Phutane laddoos.
- In a clean bowl, combine the thin Pohe and the remaining half of the grinder mixture, stirring well.
- When serving, add a few tablespoons of murmura and 1.5 cups of the thin Pohe mix.
- Finish with a topping of roasted peanuts, freshly grated coconut, and coriander. On the side, serve an extra Phutane laddoo with a wedge of lemon.
Watch this recipe here – Aleepak Pohe
Aparna Apte Karandikar is a travel and food enthusiast. She studied Computer Engineering and worked in the software industry for 15 years. Through her travels across India and abroad, she started becoming passionate about cooking and baking. Few years back, she decided to take a leap of faith to pursue her culinary passion.
She shares her culinary and travel experiences through her culinary venture ‘Apps Cooking Cottage’ and is known for her unique food workshops for kids and adults. She loves to understand the seasonal and local produce of a region and how it has been integrated with its culture and traditions.
Translations and detailed descriptions are provided to give a better understanding of the story to people from different cultural backgrounds across the globe.