Ready in: 1 hour                                                                                                          Makes: 15 pieces

Bolani used to be a great favourite among foreigners in Afghanistan, and are especially delicious when served with hot drinks. Best served crisp and hot, straight from the frying pan. However, Afghans occasionally do offer them cold, especially if they are being made alongside a lot of other dishes. 

While this recipe contains a potato filling, you can always try mixing things up by adding in spinach, lentils or leeks!

You will need:

  • 450g white plain flour (or half white, half chapati)
  • 225ml water
  • 3tsp salt
  • 900g potatoes
  • 50g spring onions
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • Vegetable oil for frying


  1. Put the flour and teaspoon of salt in a mixing bowl. Slowly adding as much water as is required. Mix to form a stiff dough.
  2. Place the dough on a clean work surface and knead for about 5-10 minutes until the dough is elastic, smooth and shiny. Form the dough into a ball, cover with a damp cloth and set aside for at least half an hour.
  3. Peel and wash the potatoes and boil them in salted water until soft. Drain off the water and mash thoroughly. Add the spring onions, salt and black pepper. 
  4. Divide the dough into 3 or 4 balls. Roll out each ball as thinly as possible on a lightly floured surface (the thickness should be no more than 1.5mm - if the dough is too thick the Bolani will be tough)
  5. Take a round cutter of 13-15cm (I often use a pan lid or tid lid), and cut as many rounds as possible. On each round spread 1-2 tablespoons of the mashed potato. Moisten the edges of the dough, fold over and seal shut.
  6. The Bolani should be spread out on a lightly floured surface until ready to fry. Heat enough vegetable oil in a frying-pan and shallow fry one or two Bolani at a time, browning on both sides. 
  7. Make sure to keep the fried Bolani warm until all are finished, and serve straight away.

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