Pav Bhaji is a very popular fast food recipe in India, liked by almost everyone. In Mumbai , you can find ‘Pav Bhaji ki Gaadi’ (Hand cart) anywhere on the streets.This cheap and filling Pav Bhaji can be eaten for Breakfast, lunch dinner- anything.
Addition of vegetables takes care of the nutrition aspect of this dish. So when you make it at home add vegetables of your choice (mostly the so called ‘English vegetables’ like carrots, cauliflower, peas etc.) to boost its nutritive value.
The Pav is heated on the griddle and buttered generously. This gravy is served hot in a flat dish with a tablespoon of butter on top.
In restaurants some more varieties are available including;
Cheese Pav Bhaji, - in which the bhaji had an additional garnishing of cheese
Paneer Pav Bhaji, Paneer as one of the ingredients in the bhaji along with the vegetables.
Mushroom Pav Bhaji, - mushrooms as one of the ingredients in the bhaji along with the vegetables.
Khada Pav Bhaji, ('खडा'). Vegetables are not mashed, but small pieces cooked with masala gravy.
Jain Pav Bhaji, replacing the potatoes with unripe bananas, Onion and Garlic is not added either.
Kathyawadi Pav Bhaji - with buttermilk, eaten particularly in the Kathyawadi.
Dry fruit Pav Bhaji - with added dry fruits.
I am sure everyone knows how to make Pav Bhaji. My method is going to be the simplest of all.
Big Potatoes 3 no
Green Peas a handful
Grated carrot 1 no
Finely chopped/grated capsicum 1 no
Finely chopped Jalapenos (optional) 2 nos
Organic Tomato sauce 3/4-1 tin
Pav Bhaji Masala powder 2 tbsp.
Kashmiri red chili powder 1 tbsp.
Butter 2 tbsp.
Jeera 1 tsp
Salt to taste
Coriander leaves to garnish
Lemon juice 1 tbsp
Pav buns (sweet dinner rolls or Potato buns)
Butter to toast the buns
- Peel the potatoes. Pressure cook carrot, peas, cauliflower and potatoes together for 3-4 whistles. Take out from the cooker and strain the water and mash the vegetables well. ( Keep the vegetable water for pavbhaji).
- Heat two tablespoons of butter in a tava, temper the jeera, once it starts crackling, add ginger paste, Jalapenos and finely chopped capsicums, and sauté for few more minutes.Add, chili powder and pavbhaji masala Sauté for three minutes.
- Now add tomato puree and little butter, and cook over medium-high heat until the oil begins to separate.
- Now add the mashed vegetables, vegetable water and the salt in it and mix it well. Very carefully, using a potato masher or the back of a ladle, mash the very well.
- Bring the mixture to a boil, turn down the heat, and simmer another 20 minutes or until the vegetables are really tender.
- Be aware that the mixture can spurt up as it boils, so keep a lid on it while you are not actively stirring it. Simmer for 15-20 minutes to really get the flavors to meld together.
- Switch off the gas. Garnish with coriander leaves. Squeeze lime and add tiny bits of butter.