bombay pav bhaji
"pav" is bread and "bhaji" is mashed vegetables. put the two together with butter and lots of spices and what you get is one of bombay's best known fast foods. sarkar's and sukh sagar are two popular places in the city for buttery, garlicy, spicy pav bhaji which is lip smackingly delicious. imli in london does a pretty decent version.
to make at home in a pinch i've found a tarla dalal recipe from her chaat cookbook that hits the spot every time. a few key ingredients are butter (do no substitute with oil!), kashmiri red chillies and everest brand pav bhaji masala. i'm not very particular on the bread to accompany the bhaji - i use whatever is available freshly baked in the store whether it is a sourdough submarine or a hamburger bun.
prep time: 15 min
cooking time: 20 min
for the pav
8 pieces of bread
4 tablesppons butter
1 teaspoon pav bhaji masala (optional)
for the bhaji
1 1/2 cups potatoes, boiled and mashed
1 cup cauliflower, finely chopped
1/2 cup green peas
1/2 cup carrots, chopped
1 cup onion, chopped
1/2 cup capsicum, finely chopped
2 1/2 cups tomoatoes, chopped
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon chilli powder
1 1/2 tablesopons pav bhaji masala
1/2 teaspoon black salt
4 tablespoons butter
salt to taste
to be ground into a chilli-garlic paste
3 to 4 kashmiri chillies, soaked in warm water
4 to 6 cloves garlic
1 large onion
4 lemon wedges
1 tablespoon chopped coriander
1. boil the cauliflower, peas and carrots till they are soft. drain out the excess water.
2. heat the butter in a large pan, add the onion and capsicum and saute for 2 minutes. then, add the prepared chilli-garlic paste and saute till the onion softens.
3. add the tomatoes and simmer till the oil separates.
4. add the turmeric powder, chilli powder, pav bahji masala, black salt and salt and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
5. add the boiled vegetables and potatoes and mash thoroughly using a potato masher, adding 1/2 cup of water if required
6. slice each bread into 2 horizontally. apply a little butter to each side and sprinkle with a little pav bhaji masala, if required.
7. heat a large tava and cook the pav on both sides till the pieces are lightly browned.
8. serve the hot bhaji on 4 individual plates and top with the onion and coriander.
9. serve with the hot pav and lemon wedges.