Yes, it is! If vegetables could sing, this would be a Mozart symphony! While, I was doing my internship in Mumbai, India, one of my favourite things was to walk up to the Chaupati beach in the evenings, eat chaat (another fantastic street food) and pau bhaji followed by kulfi (Indian ice cream). These were the only three things that the vendors on the beach served and these were so so good! If you are ever in India, and happen to visit Mumbai, a trip to Chaupati beach is worth the to try these delicacies.
Even though pau bhaji is originally from Gujrat, a state on the Western coast of India, where people are mostly vegetarian and abstain from drinking, you can find it in most large cities in India. Pau means soft bread roll and bhaji means dish. The dish is made from four vegetables cooked with onions, tomatoes, herbs and spices in a wonderful medley and is eaten with soft bread rolls toasted golden with butter and served with onions and limes on the side.
Course Breakfast, Brunch, Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine Indian, Punjabi
Prep Time 45minutes
Cook Time 30minutes
Total Time 1hour15minutes
4-5medium size potatoes2-3 inch in diameter
1/3medium size cauliflowergrated (use only florets and discard stems)
1/2cuppeasfresh or frozen
1green bell pepperseeds removed and finely chopped
5-6garlic clovesfinely chopped
2-inchfresh gingerfinely chopped
2-3 medium size onionsfinely chopped
3 totomatoesfinely chopped
4-5green chilliesfinely chopped
Hanfulfresh coriander leaves finely chopped
2tbsppau bhaji masalacan be found in any Indian grocery store
2-3tbspghee or cooking oil
12small-size soft bread rolls (pau)
Salt to taste
Boil the potatoes so that they are cooked. Once the potatoes cool down, peel and mash the potatoes and set aside.
Boil the peas in salt water for 10 minutes. Drain the water and mash the peas.
Heat the oil in a large pan or a wok. Once the oil is hot, add ginger and garlic. Stir for a minute and add the onions. Turn the heat to medium low.
Cook the onions for about ten minutes, stirring to make sure they don't burn, until onions are translucent.
Add 3/4th of the tomatoes and chillies. Cook until the oil starts leaving the side of the pans, about ten minutes.
Add potatoes, cauliflower, peas, bell pepper and salt. Add two cups of water, mix everything together and turn the heat to high.
Once the mixture comes to a boil, turn the heat to low.
Simmer on low heat for 15-20 minutes, stirring to make sure that mixture does not stick to the bottom of the pan.
Add the remaining tomatoes, pau bhaji masala, coriander leaves and mix everything together.
Heat the skillet.
Slice the rolls horizontally and butter both sides of the roll.
Grill the rolls on the skillet until they are golden brown on both sides (add more butter on the skillet if needed).
Serve with lime slices and chopped onions (please don't skip on these!).
You can make pau bhaji masala at home but it's easily available from any Indian store. This masala is what makes pau-bhaji so make sure to use it.