Pav bhaji with everest masala

Pav Bhaji

Pav bhaji with everest masala

Pav Bhaji is now popularly considered as one of the top street foods of Mumbai…loaded with butter and ghee,very few resist the temptation but often feels like an overload on the stomach which it probably is !!! It was with a lot of hesitation few years ago that I decided to make a healthier version at home…when there’s a whole world of flavours out there,why not try to add those to make a dish that one may otherwise try to avoid ! Despite being frowned upon by the pav bhaji lovers who insist it just cannot taste good without the huge amount of butter….I beg to differ…having served my bhaji to discerning food lovers from both the south of India,Mumbai or Delhi.. who said that they did not miss the butter loaded version after eating it’s healthier counterpart…I thought maybe this recipe is worth sharing…not so much the ingredients differ,it’s more the cooking techniques,instead of sauteing endlessly in ghee/butter,the masalas are cooked by adding small amounts of water. There is a bit of confusion if it’s a Punjabi or Mahrashtrian dish…does it matter as long as it’s healthy and tasty ?! I think not ! The people that have eaten it,swear that it’s a yummy accompaniment for the staple dosa/uthappam the next day….
Bhaji masala
Now,as far as the masala goes,you can make it ahead and keep it in a glass jar,it has 2 Tbsp coriander seeds,1 tbsp cumin seeds,dry mango powder,5 dried red chillies,1tsp fennel seeds,2 sticks cinnamon,6 cloves,5 pods of cardamom seeds,star anise-2,turmeric powder,dry ginger..roast all the whole spices over low heat until aroma arises..let cool and blend to a powder with the turmeric and mango powder and dry ginger…or you can also use the everest brand of pav bhaji masala which is also good in a hurry,which is why I have included the packet in the picture…there are many times I have used it when my spice mixture has dwindled or when i’m in a hurry and have no time to roast and cool spices…it’s entirely up to you !

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Instructions

  • 1. Pressure cook the potatoes,carrots,beans and cauliflower with just enough water,cutting them smaller will help to cook faster.
  • 2. Once u remove the lid,using a hand masher mash them well with the liquid,so as to keep the nutrients intact as much as possible
  • 3. In a deep pan,add 1 tbsp of oil and add the green chili and tomatoes and saute until pulpy and the oil floats,at this time add the bhaji masala and saute well,keep adding a tsp of water each time until the masala cooks well and combines with the tomatoes.
  • 4. Now add the mashed veggies and mix well.
  • 5. Then add salt,coriander leaves and some more water,about half a cup and continue stirring.
  • 6. From this point on,you need to work on getting all the flavours to come together...that means tasting for seasoning and doneness,adding water and letting it cook down really helps in blending the flavours !
  • 7. Transfer to a dish,just before serving,add the butter in the middle and serve with lime segments.
  • 8. Cook the pav/ragi bread on a medium tava with a little EVOO until golden or with butter if you prefer !

About Chef

Shanthini Rajkumar