How to Fix Common Problems with Making Perfect Puff Puffs (FAQs and My Answers)
I have failed at so many attempts to make an okay puff puff. From making flat puff puff, shapeless (not round) puff puffs, greasy puff puff, hard puffs and so on.
I made so many mistakes during my puff puff making journey, but that did not stop me. With time and more practice, I got better and graduated into making moist, soft and perfectly rounded puff puffs.
Depending on where you are in your puff-puff-making journey, you may have made a couple of failed batches. Don’t worry, it will only get better.
So, in this section of the post, I explain how to fix or avoid common problems that arise when making puff puff. Enjoy!
Why is my puff puff not round/ ball shaped? Maybe your batter did not rise (could be bad yeast or too watery batter). Maybe you did not mould the batter well when dropping into the hot oil. Later down below, I explained how to mould puff puff to get the signature perfect round shape.
Why is my puff puff flat? Or Why did my Puff Puff not rise? Maybe you added to much water during mixing and the consistency of your batter is too watery, OR maybe you did not add enough yeast.
Maybe the YEAST has expired or has been open for too long (longer than 6 months, makes it not fresh) ). OR maybe you’re not moulding the batter well when scooping into the hot oil. OR maybe you added too much yeast (which may have caused the dough to become flat).
HOW TO AVOID THAT: When adding water to your puff puff dry ingredients, it’s better to do it slowly – add a little water at a time and then mix to see if the thickness is okay. Slowly add water and mix, until you get the thickness of pancake batter. Check the video above to see what the mixture should look like before you stop adding water.
Yeast is manufactured with expiry date and it can also go bad due to storage. Always check the expiry date on the yeast container before adding it to your puff puff mix. Also, it is possible for yeast to go bad while not expired.
Baking experts at RedStarYeast advise that opened pack of dry yeast should be kept in the fridge and used up within 4 months (if in the fridge) or 6 months (if stored in the freezer).
Why is my Puff Puff soaking oil? Maybe the oil is not hot enough and so caused the puff puffs to deflate OR you places the fried puff puffs in a container where the excess oil got soaked up by the puffs.
HOW TO AVOID THAT: Fry your puff puffs in enough oil – a guide is to fill a deep pot with about 4 inches level of oil. If the oil is not enough, it can result in flat puff puffs.
Place fried puff puffs in a container that will allow excess oils to drain out, such as a strainer, basket or colander. You can also put them in a bowl that’s lined with kitchen serviettes which will soak up the excess oil.
How to Know if the Oil is hot enough for frying puff puff: Always start by pre-testing the oil temperature -drop the first puff puff dough ball into the hot oil and see what happens. If it floats, the oil is hot enough but if it sinks to the bottom of the pot, the oil is not hot enough.
My Puff Puffs are Hard and Not Fluffy: Maybe you didn’t add enough water during mixing. Get familiar with the correct batter thickness for puff puffs, which should look like pancake batter. If your puff puff batter is too thick, add a little more water next time.
Try adding one or two tablespoons more and see how it comes out. Watch the ‘how to make puff puff’ video in the beginning of this post to see how thick your puff puff mixture/ batter should be.
Too chewy or tough ‘pomo’-textured puff puff: This could have been caused by over-rising. You may have left it for too long before frying, and over-rising may have occurred. Some people leave theirs for up to 2 hours, but a fail-proof timing is to not to leave it to rise for more than 40 minutes to 1 hour.
Extra Tips for Making the Best Puff Puff Balls
How do you Mould Puff Puff to get perfect round shapes? There’s an art to making a perfectly round puff puff and it comes with technique and practice. In order to make puff puffs come out round, you need practice and patience. Here are some tips:
Method 1: Use your hand to scoop the puff puff batter. Next, make a fist (still with the batter in-hand) and then point your hand into the top of the pot and squeeze out a ball of puff puff dough either through the opening by your thumb or the one by your little finger. Watch the video to see how it’s done.
Method 2: Use a spoon. If you don’t want to get batter in your hand, you can use a deep scooping spoon to scoop the batter. Unless you’re a seasoned puff puff maker, a wide spoon will not give you perfectly round puff puffs. A round ice cream scoop spoon works well. Any other also scoop spoon works well.
Try both methods above and see the one that is easier for you.
Method 3: Use a Batter Dispenser. You can also use a ready-made puff puff dispenser or a generic batter dispenser. If you’re a DIY person, you can make your own homemade puff puff batter dispenser out of a nylon/ plastic bag or a Ziplock bag. It’s similar to icing or frosting/ piping cake with a DIY piping bag.
How do you store leftover Puff Puff? You can store leftover puff puffs in the fridge or freezer. Just put them in a container with a tight covering or in a Ziplock bag. Inside a fridge, puff puffs can be safely stored for 2 to 3 days.
Inside a freezer with constant electricity, they can store well for up to 2 months. If not in a fridge or freezer, fried puff puffs will be good (without spoiling) for 1 or 2 days.
How do you warm up leftover Puff Puff and still have them moist and soft (not dry and chewy)? Most people prefer their puff-puff hot. There’s a right and wrong way to reheat puff puff. The wrong way will dry out the puffs.
Simply reheat cold puff puffs (in a Microwave for about 20 to 30 seconds) when ready to use. If you don’t have a microwave, you can drop them in hot oil in medium heat for only a few seconds (note that refrying in oil dries the puffs a bit).
You can also reheat puff puffs in an oven – preheat the oven at medium heat, wrap or cover the puff puffs in an aluminium foil and then place them inside the oven for 15 to 20 minutes.
Can I add more yeast to puff puff dough that didn’t rise or Can I add it later If I forgot to add it earlier? If your dough did not rise or if you forgot to add yeast to your dough, you can just mix the quantity of yeast you planned to use with a few tablespoons of warm water (not hot).
Next, wait a bit for the yeast to foam, and then add the yeast water into your puff puff dough. This tip also works for any type of dough, including doughnuts.
There you have it – everything you need to know about how to make the perfect Nigerian puff puff. That has been a very long post – I wanted to make it as detailed as possible. I hope you like it? We have more cooking and exciting DIY stuff here.
Now, you should be able to make fluffy and perfectly round puff puffs in the comfort of your home, for breakfast or anytime snack.
I like puff puff so much that I sometimes craved the fluffy snack when I was not close to where I could buy any. So, I had to learn how to make them (and I saved money doing so). The best part is that they’re quick and cheap to make.
If you or someone you know is planning a wedding or party, puff puffs are a nice finger food option to serve your guests. You can save money by having the puff puffs made in-house by yourself or with the help of a few family and friends.
Send this post link to them, if they do not know how to make them.
If you tried out the puff puff recipes, I’d like to hear from you – let me know how it went. Before you go, don’t forget to leave a comment and later help me share this post with your social media peeps.
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