Poderacho Bol

Poderacho Bol, Goan Bread
Poderacho Bol

"Poder" is the term used for a Goan Bread Baker. I've been experimenting with the different types of bread that are made in Goa so that members of our food group can recreate them being away from home. Poderacho Bol is one such sweet bread that is made on special occasions.
Cecilia Tavares who runs the Tavares Bakery in Moira, Goa provided me with the nuts and bolts of this recipe and I tweaked one of my previous sweet bread recipes and applied her input to it. 
Ginger, Coconut and Cardamom are a match made in Heaven, and they work together in perfect harmony adding wonderful layers of aroma and flavour to the already sweet bread. I hope that you try and like it as much as I did!

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar (adjust up or down as required)
1 cup water or milk
2 teaspoon yeast (I've used active dried yeast)
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup oil or butter
1/2 cup freshly grated coconut (fresh frozen will do too)
1 1/2 inch fresh ginger
3 - 4 cardamom (crush to powder) or 1/2 teaspoon or so of nutmeg
1 egg (optional)

1. Get your ingredients and work space ready before you begin.

2. Mix a 1/4 cup of flour with the yeast and add in 1/2 cup of warm water or milk to it. Let it sit for around 15 minutes until the yeast starts to bubble and froth.

3. While waiting for the yeast to activate, grind the coconut, ginger and crushed cardamom to a thick paste. Add some water if you're having difficulty grinding it.

4. Mix together the remaining flour, sugar, salt and oil or butter in a mixing bowl.

5. Add in the frothy activated yeast and the ground coconut mixture, and continue to mix the dough.

6. Knead well for 8 - 10 minutes adding sufficient water to knead the dough. You should end up with a smooth, damp dough ball.

7. Spray the dough with some cooking spray or oil and cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a damp towel and set aside to proof. I usually stick it in the oven with the oven light on. Leave it to rise for one hour. 

8. Your dough should have doubled in size in that time. If not, leave it for a bit longer, maybe 15 minutes or so.

9. Flatten the dough and take it out of the bowl onto a lightly floured surface. Cut them into equal parts and shape them. These Bol are usually made in a larger 10 inch format in Goa, but seeing as how this is for home use, I've stuck with my familiar size of around 6 inches for this recipe. Feel free to experiment with whatever size you're comfortable with. Cover them with a damp cloth or place them back in the oven for a further 30 minutes. 
Note: It's recommended to cut the dough into equal parts rather than tear into balls so you don't break the gluten. Here's a quick video that will show you how to go about shaping the dough: How to shape dinner rolls - King Arthur Flour

10. After 30 minutes, pull the dough out of the oven and heat up the oven to 375*F (190*C). This next step is totally optional. If you would like to have a nice shine on the top of your bread, beat one egg with a table spoon of water and brush the mixture over the bread just before you put it in the oven for final baking. 

11. Place the dough on the middle rack of your oven and bake for around 20 minutes. 

12. Your bol are done when they turn a beautiful golden brown colour. Remove to a cooling rack and let them cool for 1/2 hour or so.

13. You should end up with soft, fluffy, and absolutely amazing smelling Poderacho Bol. 

14. Slice the Bol in half and slather with butter or have it plain with a piping hot cup of of your favourite Tea. 


Please feel free to reach out to me with feedback and/or suggestions at ddsouza@gmail.com

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