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...my journey & experiments in the kitchen

Pav Bhaji


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Pav Bhaji, if you haven’t tried it before, I promise you, it will sweep you off your feet. Dished out in the far-flung corners of the country, it has acquired the status of the foremost vegetarian recipe of all times. ‘Pav‘ literally means a bun shaped bread. Check out my earlier post on how to make the most soft pav buns at home. ‘Bhaji’ means mashed vegetables cooked with aromatic spices.

From its humble origins in the by-lanes of Mumbai, this dish has become a ‘must- have’ on menus for parties or just a simple home cooked meal. This is very popular as a fast food snack or a meal. This easy-to-cook dish enjoys a very special place in the hearts of every Indian I have known. This recipe especially goes out to one of my very special Polish friend Ewa – who is crazy about Pav Bhaji ever since she had it the first time at my place. That was almost 5 years ago and we enjoyed it again together during her recent visit. This one is a keeper for you dear! 🙂

The Bhaji is traditionally served with Pav and topped with side accompaniments as finely chopped onions, coriander leaves and lemon wedges. Not to forget a good helping of butter. Butter makes everything better, right?! 🙂 The ingredients used below are what I normally use to make Pav Bhaji but the choice is totally upto you. To make it healthier, I sometimes add in spinach and cabbage as well and no one ever knows it’s there. 🙂 That’s the beauty of this dish. Another thing – make a big batch of this, it tastes better the next day with all the flavors well blended.

My 6 year old daughter absolutely relishes this, which makes it even more enjoyable to make it.  I hope you all love it as much we do.

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Serves: 3 -4

INGREDIENTS for Pav Bhaji Masala:

1 tbsp Dry mango powder

5 Red dry chilies

2″ Cinnamon stick

6 Cloves

2 small Black cardamoms

4 tbsp Coriander seeds

2 tbsp Cumin seeds

2 tsp Black peppercorns

¾ tbsp. Fennel seeds

 METHOD: 

  1. Dry roast all the ingredients one at a time except for the dry mango powder.
  2. Once all ingredients are roasted, set aside to cool.
  3. Transfer it to a spice grinder and add dry mango powder. Make a fine powder.
  4. Store this pav bhaji masala in an airtight glass container in a cool and dry place.
  5. Can be stored for as long as 6 months in the refrigerator.

 

INGREDIENTS for Bhaji:

1½ cups or 2 medium Potatoes, chopped

1/2 cup or 1 small green Capsicum, chopped

1/2 cup Green Peas (fresh or frozen)

3/4 cup or 1/4 head of Cauliflower chopped

1/2 cup or 1 medium Carrot, chopped

3/4 cup or 1 large Onion, chopped

1¼ cup or 2 medium Tomatoes, chopped

1 tablespoon Garlic Paste

2 teaspoons Red Chilli Powder

1 teaspoon Coriander Powder

2 teaspoon Pav Bhaji Masala

1 teaspoon Lemon Juice

2 tablespoons Oil + 2 tablespoons Butter

Salt to taste

Butter for serving

2 tablespoons finely chopped Coriander Leaves

Pav Buns, for serving

METHOD: 

  1. Wash and chop all vegetables in small pieces. The size is not really important here – just that it should be uniform so it cooks together.
  2. Transfer chopped potato, cauliflower, carrot and green peas in pressure cooker. Add 1/2 cup water and salt to taste. Close with a lid and cook over medium flame for 2-whistles and turn off the heat. If you do not have a pressure cooker, just boil the veggies until soft and cooked through but not totally mushy.
  3. Mash the boiled vegetables gently with potato masher until you have a chunky texture. (My family prefers it this way – but it is upto you, if you want it smooth )
  4. In a deep pan heat oil and butter together over medium flame.
  5. Add chopped onion and garlic paste. Sauté until onion turns translucent and the raw smell of garlic disappears.
  6. Add finely chopped capsicum and tomato. Sauté until soft.
  7. Add red chilli powder, coriander powder and pav bhaji masala powder. Adjust spice levels according to your taste here. Feel free to add or reduce chilli powder – begin with just a teaspoon if you are not sure how spicy the chilli powder is.
  8. Stir and cook until you see oil oozing out of the mixture.
  9. Add boiled and mashed vegetables along with a cup of water.
  10. Mix and cook for another 4-5 minutes.
  11. Add chopped coriander leaves and a blob of butter.
  12. Season with salt and lemon juice.
  13. Serve hot Bhaji with Pav.

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TO SERVE:

  1. Cut the pav buns horizontally into halves. Heat a pan and add a tablespoon of butter. Shallow fry both sides until light brown approx. 30 seconds each side. Transfer to the plate. You can skip this part and directly serve the buns as I have here.
  2. Place hot bhaji to a single serving bowl and garnish with a cube of butter.
  3. Serve with finely chopped onion, coriander leaves and lemon wedges.

I hope you love and try out this delicious dish and don’t forget to send me a snapshot of your creation; I would love to include it in the Reader’s testimonial Album on my facebook page. 🙂

Do visit my Facebook page My Culinary Saga  and Like the page to get regular yummy updates & on Pinterest: My Culinary Saga.

P.S: I am serving this delicious platter to my friends at Fiesta Friday hosted by Angie and  co-hosted by Lily and Julianna. Hope you all enjoy this very unique recipe.

Love & Hugs,

Trupti

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