Monday, April 14, 2014

Pav - Bajji

Street-food of Mumbai..loved by almost every region in India now. They made a lovely dinner for us yesterday. But sorry about the snaps, they haven't come well at all - and this happens to me everytime. By the time I am almost done with cooking, I have 3 pairs of hungry eyes staring into the oven or into the cooking pot. I find it really hard to click sensible pics in between all this staring, shouting, crying etc etc. Something better than nothing...sharing whatever I managed to click! But they tasted awsome..

Ingredients - Pav (Yield - around 13 buns)

All purpose flour / organic bread flour - 3 1/2 cups
Active dry yeast - 1 tsp
Warm water - 1 1/2 cups
Raw sugar - 1 tsp
Salt - 1 tsp
Butter - 3 1/2 tsp (1 tsp for every cup of flour)

For brushing the pavs
Milk - 1 tbsp
Butter - 1 tsp


1. Mix active dry yeast with sugar and 1/2 cup of warm water (around 80 F). Stir gently and keep aside for 10 min in a warm place. The yeast will become frothy within that time.
2. Once yeast has become frothy, add the measured quantity of flour, salt and remaining water to this mixture. Knead in food processor (dough hook) at medium speed for around 5 minutes until everything comes together. Adjust water/flour to get a soft/elastic dough.
3. Add the butter, 1 tsp at a time and keep kneading (for approx 5- minutes) until you get a really soft dough.
4. Keep the dough aside, covered with a wet cloth, for atleast an hour till it double in size.
5. Once it has doubled in size, punch it down. Make small balls out of it and shape them to round balls. Place them on a floured tray. Keep the balls just touching each other (so that, once proofed, they will ferment upwards giving a rectangular shape like pav).
6. Pre-heat the oven to 200 deg Celsius. Brush the pavs with milk. Place the tray in oven and bake for about 20 min. Mine got done in 15 min, it really depends on your oven, so keep an eye after 15min. Towards the end, you can move your tray to the topmost rack (for 2 minutes or so) so that the tops of the pav get browned beautifully (I should have done that!)
7. Take out the tray and roll a piece of butter on the top of the pav. The pavs might appear slightly hard at this stage, but it will become super soft once cooled.

Ingredients - Bajji

Roughly chopped vegetables - about 4 cups (You can use any leftover veggies in you fridge. Here is what I used - 2 potatoes, 1 fairly big carrot, 4 beans, 1 small beetroot which gave my bajji a beautiful red colour, few florets of brocoli. You can use greenpeas if available, I didnt have them. You can even use brinjals, cauliflower etc).
Big onion - 1 big
Green chilly - 3
Garlic - 3 cloves
Ginger - 1 inch piece
Oil - 2 tbsp
Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Chopped coriander leaves - handful
Kasuri methi - 2 tbsp, crushed between your hands
Turmeric powder - 2 pinches
Chilly powder - 1 tsp (as per spice level)
Coriander powder - 1 tbsp
Tomato - 2, chopped
Hing - a pinch
Salt - as per taste
Butter - 1 tbsp


1. Pressure cook the veggies along with 2 slit green chillies and enough water to cover the veggies. Cook till 2 whistles. Keep aside to release the pressure.
2. In a wide-mouthed pan, add oil. Splutter the cumin seeds, add hing. Add finely chopped onions. Saute till they turn transparent. Sprinkle some salt for faster cooking.
3. Add the crushed ginger-garlic (or paste) along the remaining one chilly (chopped). Saute till the raw smell is gone and oil starts to leave.
4. Add the chopped tomatoes and saute till oil starts leaving.
5. Add turmeric powder, chilly powder, coriander powder and add till oil starts to leave.
6. Smash the cooked veggies with a potato masher or back of a wooden spoon and add this to the onion mixture along with a cup of water.
7. Crush some kasuri methi between your palms and add to the veggie mix. Mix well, allow to boil.
8. Add chopped coriander leaves and cook till it reaches a semi-thick consistency.
9. Add butter and mix well. Switch off the stove.

Serving the pav-bajji

Pav - 2
Bajji - 1 ladle full
Butter - to grease the tawa
Chopped onion - 2 tbsp
Butter - 1 tsp
Coriander leaves - 1 tsp
Half of 1 lime

Grease a tawa with little butter.
Cut the pav into 2, horizontally. Place them on the tawa. Let them brown well.
Meanwhile, in the serving plate, add a ladle full of bajji. Sprinkle finely chopped onions on top of it.
Sprinkle some coriander leaves on it.
Place a small piece of butter on it and also place half of a lemon on the side.
Now place the hot buns/pavs on the side and serve!!

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