Pav bhaji is one of Mumbai's famous street foods. It features two buttery buns served alongside a flavorful mash of vegetables laced with chilies and Indian spices. A simple garnish of chopped cilantro, chopped red onion, a lemon wedge and a pat of butter are the finishing touches.
Pav bhaji can best be described as a vegetarian sloppy joe in which the meat is substituted with a spicy veggie mash. The word 'pav' refers to the buns while 'bhaji' refers to the spicy vegetable mixture. It is a flavorful and filling dish that is very easy to make at home.
Ingredients You'll Need for Pav Bhaji
A traditional pav bhaji recipe calls for potatoes, green peas and tomatoes as a base. Some cooks toss in cauliflower and even carrots. These vegetables are steamed then mixed with a fragrant sauté of onions and spices.
Pav Bhaji Masala
The spices used are typically turmeric, cumin seeds, ginger-garlic paste, garam masala and green chilies. If you don't have any of these on hand you can take a shortcut and pick up a box of pav bhaji Masala at your local Indian store or online.
A Chef's Recipe for Pav Bhaji
Bombay chef Varun Inambar shares his special recipe for pav bhaji made from scratch. He uses fresh vegetables and lots of butter for extra flavor. Cumin seeds, ginger-garlic paste and chili powder kick it up a notch. You'll also need chopped green chilies and garam masala.
Instant Pot Pav Bhaji
Here is another way to make Pav Bhaji in the Instant Pot. This recipe uses cauliflower and cinnamon which add a fragrance and flavor. Since the vegetables will be pressured cooked you can cut them into large chunks for ease of preparation.