Seriously friends, I decided to make a post just to talk about Puff Puff. Because, Puff Puff! This snack has been saving lives since 1900. It actually saved my life in my undergraduate days. Back then, to eat Puff Puff I had to buy it from the Puff Puff frying women in the neighbourhood known as,"Mami Achombo" in Cameroon. And I savoured every bite because each bite was just too good. So I had to learn how to make mine because I can't carry Mami Achombo with me everywhere I go. She's not MTN.
From lessons I have taken by observing my sister-in-law who sold Puff Puff for a living, to asking all kinds of questions from people who make killer Puff Puff, I have found the killer Puff Puff recipe. I published a "Puff Puff and Beans" post before which you can find here. In this post I want to dive deeper into the dynamics of Puff Puff. That way, anyone who reads this post will know how to make the perfectly delicious Puff Puff. Welcome to the university of Puff Puff making. Course in session: Puff Puff 101!
What is Puff Puff?
It is a wickedly delicious form of deep fried dough that is eaten in a number of African countries. It is called Puff Puff in Cameroon and Nigeria. It called Les Beignets in French. Ghanaians make something similar called Bofrot or Togbei. Liberians equally eat a form of Puff Puff called Kala and the Congolese call it Mikale. It is a star.
The basic ingredients used in making Puff Puff include flour, sugar, yeast, salt, water and oil for frying. In Cameroon, that's mostly how Puff Puff is made. However, Puff Puff can be made with several other ingredients. They include nutmeg, milk, eggs, cinnamon, chocolate, coconut(!!!) and ginger if you want to ginger the swagger of the Puff Puff. Please forget I said that last part.
The Anatomy of the Perfect Puff Puff
The perfect Puff Puff should have a golden brown exterior. It should not be blackish.
Secondly, it should have an airy interior. It shouldn't be thick and dense on the inside. You achieve the perfect interior by using the right ratio of flour to water and yeast. (Please watch video to see the right consistency of the batter). Also you need to let the batter rise in a warm place for a considerable amount of time. This improves taste and texture.
Thirdly, it shouldn't be too sweet. Puff Puff should be slightly sweet, almost a bread-like kind of sweetness. That allows it to be eaten with almost anything under the sun.
Fourthly, it should be round in shape and not without form and void.
Watch me making the perfect Puff Puff.
Different Ways of Eating Puff Puff
Puff Puff could be eaten in a variety of ways which are either sweet or savoury. In Cameroon, it is typically eaten with fried beans and/or pap (a porridge made out of corn).
It could also be dipped in pepper sauce and eaten as a snack or an appetiser.
Icing sugar could be sprinkled on top for a sweet option. And it is delicious when paired with tea. Oh Puff Puff!Why art thou so yummy?
Puff Puff could also be filled with and drizzled with chocolate then eaten as a dessert. If you are a chocoholic, this will make you happy.
You see, the puffpuff-bilities are endless. Hope you enjoyed my Puff Puff 101 post. Go forth and enjoy Puff Puff!
How do you like your Puff Puff? I'll love to hear your thoughts below.
How to make the perfect Puff Puff!
- 3 cups all-purpose flour (375 grams)
- 2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast (1 sachet)
- 2 cups warm water about 500 ml
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 litre vegetable oil (for frying)
Mix yeast together with warm water and let it proof. It will look creamy and/or bubbles will form at the top.
Add the sugar and salt into the yeast and water mixture and stir well.
In a large bowl, mix the yeast mixture and flour into a smooth paste.
Cover with a plastic wrap and kitchen towel then let the batter rise in a warm place for about two hours.
Heat oil in a medium sized pot or wok on medium high heat for about seven minutes.
Turn the heat to medium then grab some of the batter with your hand and drop into oil. It will form a ball (please see the video to see how this is done). Put in enough batter just to fill the pan but not to overcrowd it.
When one side turns golden brown, flip to the other side to cook. When the balls are golden brown then they are thoroughly cooked. Remove and drain on paper towel.
Enjoy warm with tea or any way you like.
If you make this recipe, please tag me in your Puff Puff photo on Instagram @preciouscore. I love drooling oer pictures of food!