Pav Bhaji, is one of the most famous street foods of India, specially Mumbai. The spicy tangy bhaji, with a huge dollop of butter on top, enjoyed by dipping the bread into it, is the quintessential Mumbai street food.
Some say it is one of the over hyped food, but for me it is one of the yummiest street foods. Pav Bhaji made at home can never match the one that is sold in the stalls on Juhu Beach or any other street side stall. Though homemade one is close to the stall ones, but still not completely there. But homemade one is still not such a bad bet. I don’t want to claim that this tastes like the authentic street side Pav Bhaji. This is just my constant quest to achieve the authentic taste.
Kaha Suna- Stories behind how of PAV BHAJI originated: It is said that way back when textile mills flourished in Mumbai, the workers who did not have enough time to cook or eat a full course meal during work hours, cooked all the vegetables and spices together to make their life easier. Thus was invented the Bhaji that was then enjoyed with Pav, the bread.
3 nos – Onions, big sized , finely chopped
3 nos – Tomatoes , ripe and big sized
1 cup – Cauliflower florets
1/2 cup – Green peas
3 nos – Potatoes, big sized
1tbsp – Ginger garlic paste
1 no – Bay leaf
2 tbsp – Red chilly powder
2 tbsps – Coriander powder
8 tbsps – Pav Bhaji Masala powder
1 tsp – Turmeric
Salt to taste
1 tbsp – Sugar
1/4 cup – Oil
2 tbsp – Butter
Amchoor if required
For the sides
2 nos – Onions, big sized,fineeeely chopped
1/2 no – Capsicum, finely chopped
Finely chopped coriander leaves
.Boil cauliflower, peas together really well, in a pressure cooker. Mash it and keep it aside.
.Boil potatoes along with the peel and once cooked peel and mash it and keep aside.
In a heavy, preferably flat bottomed pan heat oil. Add ginger garlic paste and saute till it browns.Add chopped onions and the bay leaf and saute till the onions just start to brown. Add chopped tomatoes and saute for couple of minutes. The tomatoes will start sweating. Now add red chilly powder, coriander powder and cook the masala till the tomatoes cook and get soft. The tomatoes should lose the rawness in them.
Here is the trick to the thick nice gravy like in the restaurants. Remove and discard the bayleaf. Using a hand blender pulse this tomatoe mixture into a coarse paste. The mixture will already start resembling the bhaji. Now cook this mixture for an other 15 minutes or till the oil seperates. The mixture should look dark and well cooked.
Add the cooked and mashed veggies and potatoes to the tomato mixture. Mix well. Add pav bhaji masala , salt, sugar and mix well. Add a cup of water and cook till the oil seperates. I add one more cup of water and let it cook again. The more you cook the tastier the bhaji. Let the oil seperate. Add butter and mix well. Check for taste and add salt incase it’s needed. Add amchur if the tanginess from tomatoes is not enough.
Bhaji always tastes good the next day I usually make it a day in advance. Very host friendly ?
The bhaji should be piping hot when served. Add a dollop of butter on top of the bhaji. Serve it along with finely chopped onions and capsicum, lemon wedges and ofcourse the ladi pav toasted with butter and some pav bhaji masala powder.
Forget your waistline for that moment and enjoy it as Pav Bhaji is nothing without Butter ?
Just Dive in 🙂