Pav Bhaji

Pav Bhaji is one of my favorite Chaat food. There used to be this small chaat shop near Vitan in Mylapore and outside the shop they’d have this huge pot of choley and pav simmering away. The place would be full of students or people going back home  from work enjoying a bite of some chaat.  Once in a while, the cook would add a dollop of butter in to the huge pan and the sizzling sound of butter melting into the masala has stayed in my memory. Every time when we would go to vitan, I’d make sure to get bhel puri or pav bhaji. When I saw Lakshmi ‘s RCI-Mumbai Event, I decided right away to make pav bhaji. Looking at the list of dishes offered by Lakshmi to cook for the event, I just couldnt wait. Besides it has a lot of vegetables in it so I’d meet the 5 servings of veggies a day mantra easily.

Ingredients (Serves- 2)

Potatoes- 3 each (medium size)

Green Pepper- 1

Red onion- 1 (medium-small)

Tomato Paste- 2 tbsp

Chopped mixed veggies – 1 cup (Carrots, cauliflower, peas, beans)

Pav Bhaji Masala- 2 tsp

Garam Masala Powder- 1 tsp

Ginger Garlic paste- 1 tsp

Cumin seeds- 1 tsp

Salt – to taste

Turmeric powder- 1/2 tsp

Oil- 1 tsp to fry

Butter- 1 tbsp

Lemon slices- 2

Sliced red onions- 4 rings (to garnish)

Chopped Cilantro- 2 tbsp

Water- 3 cups


Wash and peel the potatoes. Cut them into chunks, boil and keep aside.

Finely chop the onions and green pepper. Finely chop all other veggies.

In a pan, heat oil and add cumin seeds. When they splutter add ginger garlic paste and onions and saute till they turn transparent. Add salt, turmeric powder, chopped green peppers and all other veggies and fry well for another 2-3 minutes. Add garam masala powder,pav bhaji masala powder, tomato paste and mix well.

Add the boiled potatoes and mix again. Add 3 cups of water, stir once to combine and cover and let it simmer for 20- 25 minutes. Check often if any additional water is needed.

Once the veggies are tender, using a potato masher, mash all the veggies in pot. Let it simmer in its own juices for another 5 minutes and switch off.  Add lemon juice. Garnish with cilantro. Add a dollop of butter on top.


Scoop a ladle full of the bhaji into a bowl. Add  a dollop of butter on top, garnish with onion rings and serve with a slice of lemon. Serve with buttered buns. I actually served the bhaji with phulka and it was a good match as well.

This Pav Bhaji goes to Lakshmi Venkatesh’s RCI Mumbai Event, started by of Lakshmi Krishnan

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