Sunday, November 27, 2011

Pav Bhaaji

What an accomplishment, I made pav bhaaji from scratch!I had the craving to have pav bhaaji and wanted to run to a hotel and have a mouth full, because of the fowl weather we weren;t able to go out later in the evenings.So I somehow managed to mellow down my cravings for a few days.And meanwhile kept hunting for recipes.

Pav Bhaaji is a very popular street food in Mumbai.I first tasted it when i moved to Mumbai for further studies and fell in love with the street food...vada paav, ragda patties,pav bhaaji to name a few.At home in Mumbai, we buy fresh pavs from the local baker,I would have never thought of baking it at home until my recent obsession with bread making.Pav/laadi paav means a slab of bread rolls, and bhaaji means a vegetarian side dish.So pav bhaaji is one great finger licking combination of bread and tangy vegetable gravy.

To make the pav:
Flour 2 cups(1 cup all purpose flour + 1 cup wheat flour)
Sugar 2 tsp
Baking soda 1/2 tsp
Salt 1 tsp
Yeast 1 tsp
Warm water 1 -1.5 cups
Butter/Oil 3 tablespoons(or lesser)
For brushing: Warm Milk 2 tablespoons and Melted Butter 1 tablespoon

  • In a mixing bowl, add the flours, sugar,salt and yeast and baking soda.Add the warm water and knead into a smooth dough.
  • Add the oil little by little and knead until the oil disappears into the dough.
  • You can stop kneading when the dough springs back when you push it with your finger.Apply oil generously on the dough and cover with cling film and set it aside in a oven.The dough will take about 1 hour to double in size.
  • Once the dough has risen well(doubled), dust a counter top, put the dough on the counter and roll into a rectangle, now cut into rectangular buns and place in a buttered baking tray.Again cover these cut buns and allow to raise again for an hour or so.(since i used wheat flour it didn't raise much after this point, but the pavs were soft).
  • Preheat the oven to 250C and just before pushing the tray to bake, brush milk on the bun tops.
  • Bake for 25 minutes until the tops are crusty and bottoms are lightly beginning to brown or tap to see if hollow.At this point take the pavs out and brush melted butter and keep it in the hot oven turning off the power.
  • Hot pavs are ready to be eaten with bhaaji or just tea.

To make the Bhaaji
Onions 1 large/2medium size chopped finely
Tomatoes 1 large/ 2 medium chopped finely
Ginger garlic paste 1 tablespoon
Boiled Vegetables 2 cups(Potatoes 2 large,Cauliflower florets 1/2 cup,Beans 5-6,Carrots 1 small-chopped,Capsicum 1 small-diced,Peas a handfull)
Pav Bhaaji Masala 2 tablespoons(Everest brand)
Lime juice 1 tablespoon or more
Chopped Cilantro a handful
Oil/Butter 2 tablespoons

  • Heat oil in a pan, add onions fry until soft and transparent.Add the ginger garlic paste next, now add the tomatoes.
  • Add the mashed vegetables into the onion tomato gravy.
  • Add the pav bhaji masala and salt to taste.
  • Once the vegetables cook well in the masalas, turn off the stove and add chopped cilantro and lime juice.

  • To serve, cut the pav in half lengthwise apply butter or ghee and roast the inner sides on a pan, and serve hot with the bhaaji.Top the bhaaji with chopped onions and lime wedges, a dollop of butter (indulgence!)

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