A popular Indian street food. A spicy mix of mashed vegetables (bhaji) cooked in a special blend of spices and served with butter toasted buns (pav)
This is traditionally cooked on a large tava (griddle pan), mine is however a simple version where I pressure cook the vegetables and then make an onion tomato gravy with the pav bhaji spices. I use a ready spice mix, which is available at most Indian stores as ‘pav bhaji masala’ or you can even make it yourself. Once the gravy is ready I add the pressure cooked vegetables and let everything cook for till the flavours are merged.
Pav Bhaji is usually served with tava toasted butter pavs, a generous amount of butter topped with chopped red onions and lemon juice.
Every time I have Pav Bhaji it takes me back to my days in Mumbai!
- Serves: 4-6 people
- Difficulty: Easy
- 250g diced potatoes
- 500g chopped mixed vegetables chopped (frozen or a mix of carrots, peas, peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, etc)
- 2 to 3 finely chopped onions –
- 2 heaped tsp ginger garlic paste
- 2 to 3 finely chopped green chillies
- 3 to 4 finely chopped tomatoes (or a can of chopped tomatoes)
- 2 tsp turmeric
- 1 to 2 tsp red chilli powder (optional)
- 2 tbsp dry mango powder (amchur)
- 2-3 tbsp ready ‘Pav Bhaji masala’ or make your own
- Salt to taste
- 150g butter (or more if you prefer)
- Two lemons
- handful of chopped coriander – for garnish
- One chopped red onion – for garnish
- Pressure cook the potatoes and mixed vegetables with a little water, salt and turmeric
- Add butter to a large saucepan and temper the cumin seeds
- Add onions, green chillies and ginger garlic paste and cook till the onions start to brown
- Add the chilli powder and pav bhaji masala and fry for a minute
- Add the chopped tomatoes and cook for about 5 minutes
- Drain the water from the pressure cooked vegetables and keep aside (stock). You may need to use a bit of that stock if the ‘bhaji’ is too dry else it’s vegetable stock which can stay refrigerated for a few days to be used later in soups or curries.
- Add the pressure cooked vegetables to the onion tomato mix and cook for 5-10 minutes till all the flavours are well combined
- Add the dry mango powder
- Taste and add more salt and pav bhaji masala if required
- Turn off the heat and roughly mash the ‘bhaji’ using a potato masher. Some like to mash it completely, however I prefer to leave it a bit chunky
- Finish off with crushed kasturi methi and lemon and another dollop of butter
Getting the pav buns ready
- Slit the pav buns horizontally, add butter to a hot pan.
- Optional – sprinkle a bit of pav bhaji masala over the hot butter
- Place the pav buns and toast on both sides for a few minutes till lightly browned.
- Put the bhaji on a plate
- Garnish with chopped onions and chopped coriander
- Serve with the pan toasted pav with a side of chopped onions and lemon