Pholourie Recipe: Bite-Size Glory And Taste of the Caribbean

A broad range of fried dough treats are prevalent in the culinary traditions of every Caribbean destination. Among my own personal favorites, of course, are the Johnny Cakes I grew up enjoying in St Croix. My Trini roots, though, also play prominently in my culinary predilections. As such, the golden glories known as pholourie are also very high on my list.

Touted recently by the gourmet gurus at Saveur, who incidentally got wind of ’em from, pholourie is a staple appetizer or snack food in Trinidad. It’s enjoyed at all hours of the day in the land of my parents’ birth, and with good reason.

Pholourie, you see, goes well with just about any and every Caribbean food. Another plus: it’s very affordable. At Joy’s Roti Delight, one of the best Trini eateries where I live in South Florida, you can get five pholourie for just $1!

You won’t want to forget the chutney sauce that comes with it, either. Pholourie’s are good on their own, but pure heaven with Joy’s sauce.

Now what, however, should you do if there’s no Trini roti shop near you? No Joy’s or Nio’s, Patrick’s favorite roti shop near his home in Brooklyn?

Answer: make your own pholourie at home!

Here’s a quick and easy recipe from the Naparima Girls’ High School cookbook

Pholourie Recipe


Pholourie is a staple appetizer or snack food in Trinidad & Tobago where it’s enjoyed at all hours of the day. Pholourie goes well with just about everything.


  • 2 cups soaked and ground split peas
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1-1/2 tsp salt/black pepper
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp saffron powder
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • water
  • pepper to taste


  1. First, mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. Next, start adding water… gradually. It’s important not to add too much water as the idea is to create a thick batter. If your mixture looks like soup, you’ve gone too far.
  3. Now it’s time to cook. Heat your oil in a large pot. Here’s a trick my Mom taught me to know when the oil is hot enough for frying – just put a small piece of the batter in the oil once you think it’s ready. If the batter turns brown in a few seconds, you’re good to go.
  4. Drop teaspoon-sized pieces of batter into the hot oil and cook ’em until they’re slightly brown. They’ll cook pretty fast, so be ready to scoop ’em out and place them in a bowl lined with paper towels to soak up the excess oil.
  5. After a minute or two of cooling off, your pholourie will be ready to eat!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 73Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 565mgCarbohydrates: 14gFiber: 4gSugar: 1gProtein: 4g

(Tip: Also try this great mango chutney recipe to accompany your pholourie.)


Get even more recipes in the Naparima Girls Highschool Cookbook; the best-selling Caribbean cookbook.

Last updated by Steve Bennett on .

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