Pav Bhaji

Whenever I think of Maharashtian food one thing that instantly tantalizes my taste buds is “Pav-Bhaji”. Pav means bread, (origin from Portugeese pão) and Bhaji for a curry and vegetable dish. Interestingly, this “street” dish was created by a vendor who used to serve food in the canteen of a Mumbai textile mill. Incorporating healthy vegetables with pav into a light lunch was a great alternative for workers who engaged in strenuous labor. The mill workers food has since found its way to Mumbai’s world famous chaupati to high end restaurants around the world. For the ones who would prefer to bring the taste of chaupati to their kitchen following is the most simple but tasty version of pav bhaji. Not to mention a great way to make your kids eat their veggies.

Imagine walking barefoot on the beach sand, a gentle breeze brazing your hair and this savory pav bhaji in hand…….Happy eating!
Preparation and cooking time: 40 mins

  • 2 onions chopped finely (keep aside 2tbsps for garnishing)
  • 2 tsp finely grated ginger
  • 3 finely minced garlic cloves
  • 2 finely chopped green chilies
  • 2 tomatoes finely chopped
  • 1 cup each of chopped mixed vegetables (French beans, carrots, cauliflower, green peas)
  • 3 medium sized potatoes peeled and cubed
  • 3 tsp pav bhaji masala (I prefer MDH)
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • Fresh coriander leaves roughly chopped
  • Lemon wedges for garnish
  • 8 pavs 

  • Pressure cook (2 whistles) at medium heat all the vegetables (potatoes, cauliflower, carrots, beans) with a pinch of salt and 4 tsps of water and keep them inside till the steam inside cools down. Mash vegetables while they are hot.
  • Heat 2tbsp oil in a cooking pan and add garlic, ginger and green chilies. Fry for 2 minutes then add onions until golden brown in color. 
  • Add pav bhaji masala and salt. Stir and add chopped tomatoes. Cook at slow heat covered for 10 minutes so that the masala and tomatoes combine well.
  • Now add the previously mashed vegetables and a cup of water and adjust salt, let it simmer for 20 minutes.Top it with butter, lemon juice, chopped onion and coriander leaves.
  • Slit pavs in the middle and roast them in butter and a pinch of salt. Enjoy it hot with bhaji.