This is one of my favorite fast food, love eating on the streets of Mumbai, opposite to VT (now CST) Railway Station during my teenage days. I do even now when we go out for shopping. The flavor, the aroma fills the air around when we walk by any Pav Bhaji stall and surely makes your tummy start grumbling and urging you to munch on! any Indian blog without this recipe is like incomplete. Pav Bhaji was more popular in Northern India, esp Gujarat and Maharashtra and its metropolitan cities. Souther India did not have much hang of it until the last two decades. I remember I once ordered it at some 3 star restaurant in Vizag and it was so aweful! But now things have changed with people moving to all different places they are bringing the food from where they traveled and thus Pav bhaji is southern favorite too!
This is a very scrumptious meal, as it has the bread (carbs), the veggies and butter. All in all a healthy meal and kids wont complain if you cook this daily. To make bhaji, potatoes are mashed on a flat pan called a tava, and made into a thick gravy after adding diced tomatoes, finely grilled onions, green peas, capsicums (green pepper) and other vegetables like cauliflower and carrots. A special blend of spices simply called the pav bhaji masala similar to garam masala is added to this thick gravy. The gravy is then allowed to simmer on the pan for a few minutes and is served hot in a flat dish with a tablespoon of butter on top.
The pav (bread) is roasted on the same pan with an ample amount of butter and a masala (usually chilli powder and salt). The Bhaji is garnished with diced onions and a slice of lemon and served with the pav. We used to make it especially on new Year's eve party along with our neighbours in Kalyan. I know this is frequently made in India and Indians around the world by and no one needs a recipe for this... but still I am blogging about this fabulous meal for my satisfaction and the urge to share this with the world. So if you think this is just another recipe! not my problem!!!
½ C cauliflower heads, small
1 C tomatoes, chopped
½ C red onions, chopped finely
½ C green pepper, chopped medium ( I used long green chillies, instead)
½ C green peas, fresh or frozen
2 t Pav Bhaji Masala ( I used Everest brand)
1 tsp paprika powder
6 Bombay Pav or Bread rolls
salt as per taste
oil or butter for cooking
1 T cilantro, chopped
¼ C red onions, finely chopped
Lime quarters and Papad
- Boil and mash 4 big potatoes, chop all the veggies and keep aside.
- Heat 2tablespoons of oil in a wide saute preferably non-stick one, add chopped onions, pinch of salt and let it fry for 3 mins or till they turn soft and pink. Then add tomatoes, green chillies and fry till the tomatoes are mushy mushy or turning into gravy.
- Add the rest of the veggies, cauliflower florets, green peas, green peppers etc(you can use carrots too!) Mix well add 1 cup water and let the cauliflower cook. Cover with a lid and let the Bhaji cook for 10 mins approx on medium high flame.
- By now allthe veggies must have cooked well and will turn into gravy like consistency. Quickly add the Pav bhaji masala, paprika powder and salt and mix well till the powders blend into the veggies. If the Bhaji is too dry add little more water and mix well.
- Lastly add 1 tablespoon butter to make it creamy. Meanwhile cut the Pav (bread rolls) into halves and roast it on a pan/griddle with little butter.
- Serve the Bhaji hot, garnish with chopped onions, cilantro and a dash of butter. Serve with fresh butter roasted Pavs and lime quaters.
- Enjoy the celebrations or whatever thats special to you with this sumptuous wholesome meal.