Meet Amalu, Puri Jagannath Temple’s Malpua Version
Image Credit: Amalu is part of the Mahaprasad at Puri's Jagannath Temple. Image courtesy: Facebook/Bhuvanasundari Radhadevidasi

Holi is popularly known as the festival of colours, but most people also know that the festival, according to Hinduism, is associated with Lord Krishna, one of the avatars of Lord Vishnu. This is the reason why the major centres of Vishnu worship across the nation, and especially temple towns like Mathura-Vrindavan, Puri and Dwarka, celebrate Holi with great aplomb. Each town has its own set of rituals to celebrate Holi, and this includes the preparation of certain foods which are considered to be a favourite of Lord Vishnu, and particularly Lord Krishna. 

In Puri, Odisha, the town known for one of the biggest temples dedicated to Lord Jagannath, Holi and all other auspicious days are celebrated with the offering of a Chhappan or 56 Bhog. An integral part of this 56 Bhog is a dish called Amalu. Amalu is a specific type of Malpua prepared at the Puri Jagannath temple. Here’s everything you should know about this special Malpua version. 

Understanding The Types Of Amalu 

At the Puri Jagannath temple, Amalu is one of the most popular Mahaprasads offered to the deity. The dish is believed to be as ancient as the temple itself. Also known as Temple Malpua, it is prepared in three different varieties: Sana Amalu, Bada Amalu and Hatapoda Amalu. While Sana and Bada Amalu are small in size—and therefore 84 of them are prepared for the Bhog—Hatapoda Amalu is thick and big. Only two pieces of the Hatapoda Amalu are prepared specifically for the deity.  

Apart from Holi, the other major festivals during which these Amalu are prepared for the offering are Ratha Yatra and Jhulan Yatra. This apart, another version of the Amalu, known as Khiri Amalu, is also offered on other festivals. Within the temple complex, Amalu is prepared in the Roshaghora or temple kitchen on something called a Swathantra Chuli, which is a type of special stove. Amalu is prepared on a flat-shaped metal vessel called Thoyira, while other Pithas and offerings are prepared in a Korayi or wok. The batter for the Amalu is quite like other Malpuas, but the liquid is poured on the Thoyira using a ladle crafted from the auspicious Manika Patra leaves. 

Image courtesy: Facebook/Siba Mishra


Making Amalu: A Unique Recipe For A Malpua 

Malpuas in general are made using wheat flour, milk, sugar and other additions like bananas and coconuts. Usually, the batter-making process is quite simple as all you have to do is mix the batter in one bowl, then fry it and dip it in syrup. However, the Amalu is prepared a little differently. While wheat flour seasoned with fennel seeds is used, the sweetness of the dish is not gathered from the addition of sugar syrup. Instead, jaggery is melted, cooked and added to the batter itself. This not only eliminates the syrup-dipping process, but also gives the Amalu a caramelised brown colour that is unique to this version of Malpua. Here’s the recipe. 


1 cup wheat flour 

½ cup jaggery, grated 

½ tsp fennel seeds, crushed 

1 cup water 

¼ tsp salt 

Ghee, for frying 


1. Place the wheat flour in a large bowl. 

2. Add the salt and crushed fennel seeds, and mix well. 

3. Place the jaggery and water in a pot. 

4. Heat the mixture and whisk to combine. 

5. Once the jaggery is completely melted and you have a consistent liquid, switch off the flame. The jaggery mix does not have to be of a syrupy consistency. 

6. Once cooled, pour the jaggery mix over the flour and quickly mix both to make a thick batter. 

7. Make sure there are no lumps in the batter. You can add a bit of water to fix the batter consistency. 

8. Heat a flat pan and pour some ghee on it. Spread it around evenly. 

9. Now, pour the Amalu batter and spread it evenly. Let it cook on one side, then flip to cook the other side. 

10. You can make the Amalu thick or thin based on your preference. 

11. Once cooked, remove the Amalu and serve as an offering to the Lord.