Delicate bread filled with tasty fillings and fried is always good, but this afghani bolani recipe with potatoes and green onions is the ultimate. A homemade filling that is unbelievably easy to make is the perfect light and comforting addition to simple homemade fry bread. This will soon become a family favorite and is sure to make your mouth water every time it is cooking.
Afghani Bolani with Potatoes and Green Onions
You've probably had some sort of simple dough filled with savory bits before. Perhaps a pierogi, a simple dumpling, or even a calzone. Every region of the world has great versions of the same concept. Homemade dough stuffed full of deliciousness and steamed or fried never fails to impress. This traditional choice is one you are sure to fall in love with making and serving. This simple flatbread is stuffed full of yumminess and served most often for special occasions, but we love it every single day of the year.
What is Bolani?
Bolani, sometimes called periki, is simply a stuffed flatbread originating in Afghanistan. Most often this is fried, but occasionally baked, and stuffed with vegetables, potatoes, or even minced meat. It's a great choice to serve as a starter, but depending on your preferences could be an entire meal by itself. In traditional recipes, it would be served with plain yogurt or mint yogurt sauce.
A similar dish that might also appeal is this tasty Indian stuffed potato paratha. It's a great choice with a similar style but different flavors that are super yummy.
Can I Use Different Fillings in Bolani?
Yes! You can definitely add whatever you want inside bolani. Potatoes, scallions, leeks, and sweet potatoes with a variety of spices are commonly used for stuffing. While you won't find a lot of traditional options that are filled with cheese, you may find minced meat options. Usually focused on traditional Afghani flavors and spices, this is something versatile that is unique to each family and restaurant. Below are some options you might find inside bolani at a restaurant.
- Spinach or kale
- Mushrooms and onions
- Spiced chicken, lamb, beef, or pork
- Butternut squash or pumpkin
What Oil Should I Use for Frying?
When frying this, I would usually just reach for vegetable oil. Some prefer peanut oil, and some will use canola oil. While frying in olive oil can be done, it tends to smoke and burn far too easily. So, I recommend basic vegetable oil or preferred frying oil for this recipe.
Do I Need to Serve This With a Dipping Sauce?
It is best with some simple dipping sauce. In our house, the kids will reach for Ranch dressing, but traditionally plain yogurt or a mint sauce would be served. A squeeze of lemon, some garlic, black pepper, and plain yogurt are easy to whip up and serve for dipping. You could also use sour cream or Greek yogurt with this if you prefer.
What you dip the bolani into will also depend a bit upon what is stuffed in the interior. With simple things like potatoes and vegetables, the creamy sauce is ideal. For meats, you may not find a need for a dip or could want something more complementary to the spices used.
What Can I Substitute for the Sumac Spice
Sumac spice is not commonly used in American cooking. It can, however, be found in most ethnic cuisine sections or in Asian or Middle Eastern stores where there is a larger spice variety on hand. If you cannot locate this in your local stores, you can simply use lemon pepper seasoning in place. The bright citrus flavor of the sumac is best duplicated with lemon or even a bit of apple cider vinegar. However, when using these, you will cut back by half as the sumac flavor is much more subtle than substitutes.
- Vegetable oil
- Green onions
- Chili flakes
- Olive oil
- Black pepper
- Oil for frying
Handy Kitchen Tools
How to Make Afghani Bolani
Wash potatoes, poke a few holes into them with a fork, then place on a microwave-safe plate and cook in the microwave on high for 10 minutes.
When soft, let cool, then peel and place the cooked potatoes into a bowl.
To the potatoes, add salt, black pepper, sumac, chili flakes, and mix.
Then add olive oil, parsley, and green onions.
Stir and mash to combine until all incorporated well.
In a bowl, add the flour, a pinch of salt, warm water, and olive oil.
Mix together and knead until smooth and slightly sticky dough ball forms.
Let the dough rest for 30 minutes.
Cut the dough into 6 portions and roll each ball into a circle, about ¼" thick similar to a tortilla.
Spread the potato filling over ½ of the dough leaving a ½" border along the edge.
Spread a small amount of water around the edges of the dough, then pull over the empty half creating a half-moon-shaped bolani.
Pinch the edges to seal.
Heat 1" vegetable oil in a deep-sided skillet.
Fry each bolani for 2-3 minutes per side, until cooked through and lightly browned.
Serve with dipping sauce.
More Tasty Recipes
If you love trying delicious new flavors, then the recipes below are a great place to begin. You'll find amazing herbs, spices, and flavor profiles that are sure to please your tastebuds. Whether you are new to the kitchen or have years of experience, it's fun to experiment with new things and the recipes below are a great beginning.
- Spicy Indian Chapli Kebabs
- The Best Veg Manchurian Recipe with Gravy
- Fry Bread Tacos with Spicy Beef and Green Chile Queso
- Tandoori Stovetop Tikka Naan Pizza
- 3 cups (350g) flour
- 2 tsp salt, divided
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 cup (240 ml) warm water
- 500 g (1 pound) potatoes
- 1 cup green onions, chopped
- 1 cup parsley, chopped
- 1 tsp sumac
- 1 tsp red chili flakes
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- ½ tsp black pepper
- Vegetable oil
- Wash potatoes, poke a few holes into them with a fork, then place on a microwave-safe plate and cook in the microwave on high for 10 minutes.
- When soft, let cool, then peel and place the cooked potatoes into a bowl.
- To the potatoes, add 1 teaspoon salt, black pepper, sumac, chili flakes, olive oil, parsley, and green onions.
- Stir and mash to combine until all incorporated well.
- In a bowl, add the flour, 1 teaspoon salt, warm water, and olive oil.
- Mix together and knead until smooth and slightly sticky dough ball forms.
- Let the dough rest for 30 minutes.
- Cut the dough into 6 portions and roll each ball into a circle, about ¼" thick similar to a tortilla.
- Spread the potato filling over ½ of the dough leaving a ½" border along the edge.
- Spread a small amount of water around the edges of the dough, then pull over the empty half creating a half-moon shaped bolani.
- Pinch the edges to seal.
- Heat 1" vegetable oil in a deep-sided skillet.
- Fry each bolani for 2-3 minutes per side, until cooked through and lightly browned.
Serve with plain yogurt or mint yogurt sauce.
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Hamilton Beach Cool-Touch Deep Fryer, 8 Cups / 2 Liters Oil Capacity, Lid with View Window, Basket with Hooks, 1500 Watts, Electric, Black (35021)
Potato Express Microwave Potato Cooker (1)
Farberware Dishwasher Safe Nonstick Jumbo Cooker/Saute Pan with Helper Handle - 6 Quart, Blue
Hotec Premium Stainless Steel Locking Kitchen Tongs with Silicon Tips, Set of 2-9" and 12"
Farberware Professional Heat Resistant Nylon Meat/Potato Masher - Safe for Non-Stick Cookware, Pack of 1, Black
KitchenAid Classic Mixing Bowls, Set of 3, Pistachio
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 112Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 798mgCarbohydrates: 2gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 1g