Think of India, the first thing comes to mind is its diversity. The diversity in language ,religion, region and customs made it obvious to spread the equal amounts of diversity to food even. Indians take their food very seriously. Each family has their own kind of cooking methodologies using fresh ingredients.They often prepare the ingredients like wheat flour from the scratch using stone ground method in most of the villages even today.Cooking is a quite essential qualification for all the daughters and mothers usually pass down their family recipes when they come to teenage,More than a tradition the idea is to impart an essential skill of life really.Each region has its unique style of cuisine and cooking methods and food is often made from scratch. Meal times are an important form of occasions where everybody would sit together and have a heartfelt talk with each other.The bond of togetherness during meal times makes children understand the importance of being together for each other and how essential is sharing in one’s life..
While the family meals are warm in their unique way, street food in India is a totally a different and lightening experience. Do you remember those days standing along with your best buddy one the street side where plenty of street carts serve those spicy masala vada,the famous gol goppaa aka pani puri,puffed up poori,charred corn, roasted peanuts on open fire.The mixed aroma of those street foods makes even the gloomy and wet weather an exciting heaven..I still remember each and every evening I had pani puri and Pav Bhaji along with my closest friends in the streets of India.
Beach, pani poori, waves and Pav Bhaji is a kind of heavenly combination to me..Pav Bhaji is one of the famous street foods of India especially in Bombay, now called Mumbai..Pav Bhaji is the healthiest version of street food I feel. You take any other street foods, almost all are fried with loads of oil. also Pav Bhaji makes you feel full with loaads of vegetables and carbohydrates(a kind of bread). To me it’s a kind of mini meal. Loads of fresh vegetables boiled and simmered in mild spices with a blob of fresh butter served along with soft Pav Bread is no less than a heaven.
I tasted my best Pav Bhaji in the streets of Mumbai when I was working in Chennai, My brother used to work there few years ago before moving to London, those memories…
For Pav Bhaji recipe , the amount of butter is your choice and can put as much as you want, Using unsalted butter gives bhaji a fresh taste when compared to that of with salted butter. I used Lupark unsalted butter for this Pav Bhaji recipe and if you are in India, Amul is the best choice I would say.Next to butter, it is the blend of spices that goes into the bhaji, Btw bhaji means curry.
In any Indian store, you get this masala blend called Pav Bhaji masala, I used Everest brand.It is the magic ingredient for Pav bhaji
Okay, the pav bhaji recipe doesn’t include mustard seeds, but I added them accidentally so you take care not to 🙂 And always make sure you don’t make it too spicy, you should feel the taste of butter through out . Even the pav(bread) is lightly roasted with soft butter before serving along with bhaji.
Garnish the bhaji it with lots of fresh coriander and chopped onions with a dash of lemon and a blob of butter..
- 2 Potatoes medium sized
- 2 Carrots
- 1 Cup Cauliflower florets
- ½ Cup French Beans chopped(optional)
- ½ Cup green peas
- 2 tablespoons Oil
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- Salt to taste
- 1 Onion chopped
- 1 Green chilli chopped
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ½ teaspoon ginger garlic paste
- 1 Big Tomato chopped
- 1 and ½ tablespoon Pav Bhaji Masala
- ¼ teaspoon garam masala
- ½ tablespoon red chilli powder(Kashmiri red chilli powder works best as natural colouring agent too, it gives nice orange-reddish color to bhaji
- Unlimited Butter( as much as you want)
- 4- 5 Pav Buns
- For Garnish
- Finely chopped coriander leaves
- 1 Finely chopped onion
- Lemon slices
- For Bhaji Preparation, pressure cook or boil in hot water or microwave all vegetables except onion,tomato, capsicum(if using) and green peas. If using pressure cooker, cook for only one whistle.
- Drain the water from cooked vegetables(if any) and keep aside
- Mash the cooked vegetables using a spatula such that they don't become purée, you should see few chunks of vegetables too along with some mashed vegetables.
- Heat oil+1 tablespoon of butter in a pan and crackle cumin seeds.When they splutter, add in chopped onions, green chilli along with little salt and turmeric and fry till transparent
- Add in ginger garlic paste and fry until the raw smell goes off.
- Add in chopped tomatoes and cook till they turn out soft.
- At this point add in pav bhaji masala, garam masala and red chilly powder and fry for another 3-5 mins until all the raw smell goes off and the spice blends well with the cooked onion and tomato.
- Then add the boiled and mashed vegetables , green peas, capsicum and adjust salt, so it combines well with the pav bhaji masala.
- cook on medium flame and make sure you don't make the curry too dry, If so add the water we preserved after cooking the vegetables little by little to ensure the bhaji don't run like stew.
- Adjust salt and cook for 6-8 min on low flame until nicely done.
- For Pav Bhaji
- Slice the pavs into two halves .Roast the buns along with some butter and they are ready to get dunk in the tasty bhaji out there.Add a blob of butter into the bhaji and serve with Pav along with fresh chopped coriander onions and lemon juice.
Add little water whenever the curry dries up while getting cooked.